Grandmother’s ‘monster’ role opened door to vote
The year was 1891 and Norman Wright’s grandmother was in the thick of things. A founding member of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union of Victoria, Margaret McLean was a teetotaller, a mother to many, and a teacher.
But it was in her pursuit of women’s equality that she, quite literally, left her mark on Victoria’s history.
Her name tops the list of the “Monster Petition”, a seminal document from 1891 signed by 30,000 people who were united in their call for Victorian women’s right to vote. Seventeen years later that call was heard and Victoria’s women were accorded the same right as those from other states.
A witness to sweeping social change for women during his 87 years, Mr Wright sees that his grandmother’s simple action was of great importance.
“Obviously, the petition had some bearing,” Mr Wright said. “Over the years it’s been worthwhile. Some might say they haven’t gone far enough.”
This year marks the centenary of women’s suffrage in Victoria, and the Monster Petition is a centrepiece of the State Government’s celebrations. Women’s Affairs Minister Maxine Morand said it was important for people to commemorate the suffragist struggle, particularly young women, who may not realise what many women, and some men, had to face in the fight for equality.
Refer also : Margaret McLean
Image : Part of ‘Monster’ Petition for Women’s Suffrage 1891
Details : http://prov.vic.gov.au/blog-only/the-case-against-universal-suffrage
Women became eligible to vote for the Parliament of South Australia in 1895. In Victoria, women became eligible to vote 1908. The Woman’s Christian Temperance Union had lobbied for these initiatives.
Christian women involved in formation of the :
Australian Woman’s Christian Temperance Unions
and involved in the campaign for Women’s suffrage.
Christian men involved in those movements.
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