|Died||1877 (aged 92)|
|Children||10, including Thomas Bywater Smithies|
Catherine Smithies (née Bywater; 1785 – 1877) was an English philanthropist and campaigner for animal welfare, abolitionism and temperance. She was the creator of the first Band of Mercy, which promoted teaching children kindness towards non-human animals and led to the Bands of Mercy movement.
After her husband's death, she moved to London to live with Thomas at Earlham Grove House. In the 1860s, Smithies authored A Mother's Lessons on Kindness to Animals, which was published in several volumes. In 1870, along with Angela Burdett-Coutts, she founded the Ladies Committee at the RSPCA. In 1875, she founded the first Band of Mercy.
Smithies died in 1877; on her deathbed she stated: "the teaching of children to be kind and merciful to God's lower creatures is preparing the way for the gospel of Christ." She was buried in Abney Park Cemetery in Stoke Newington, with her son Thomas (who died in 1883). A guard of honor was formed by uniformed RSPCA officers at her funeral.
After her death, Smithies was memorialised by Thomas, in issue number 281 of The British Workman. Smithies' family and friends erected an obelisk and public drinking fountain in Wood Green, London as a memorial.
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