Louise von François, born in Herzberg, Germany, wanted to become a physician, a nearly impossible ambition for a girl in 19th-century Germany. She received little formal education but was self-taught, especially in history. She never married and was expected by her family to care for her elderly relatives. Like many other women, she began writing late at night or early in the morning, when she was free from domestic chores. She published anonymously a history of the Wars of Liberation, which became a textbook for Prussian officers. Other works included several historical novels, beginning with Die letzte Reckenburgerin (The Last Reckenburgerin), published in 1871.