Born in London on 6th September 1841, the second daughter of George William, 4th Lord Lyttelton and his first wife, Mary Glynne. Lucy Caroline became a maid of honour to Queen Victoria in 1863 and in 1864 married Lord Frederick Cavendish (1836-1882), the second son of the 7th Duke of Devonshire. Lord Frederick was appointed Chief Secretary for Ireland in 1882 but tragically, within a few hours of taking up this appointment, he was assassinated in Phoenix Park in Dublin.
After her husband's death Lucy pursued her life-long interest in the education and welfare of girls and young women, becoming a notable speaker and indefatigable money raiser for causes in which she was interested. These included The Girls Public Day School Company (founded in 1872) to promote the establishment throughout England of large day schools for middle-class girls, and the Yorkshire Ladies Council for Education where she was President for 27 years from 1885-1912.
In 1894 Lucy was appointed a member of the Royal Commission on Secondary Education (the Bryce Commission) by the Prime Minister, Lord Rosebery (1847-1929). She was one of only three women in a membership of seventeen.
On 6 October 1904 she received the honorary degree of Doctor of Laws at the formal inauguration of the University of Leeds for 'notable service to the cause of education'.
She died in Penshurst, Kent on 22nd April 1925.
This collection comprises correspondence from Lucy Caroline Cavendish, mostly to her sister Meriel Talbot; copy letters from brothers and sisters; the marriage settlement between Lord Frederick Cavendish and Lucy Caroline Lyttelton; a list of letters from Lucy Caroline Cavendish to 'The Times' with some transcripts; press cuttings re the death of Lucy Caroline Cavendish.
These papers were presented as a gift to the College by Lucy Blanche Masterman, niece of Lucy Caroline Cavendish.