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Women's Freedom League

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Women's Freedom League

Women's Freedom League demonstration on Glasgow Green in 1914.

The WFL was founded in 1907 to campaign for votes for women, after many supporters of the campaign to win votes for women became disenchanted with the leadership provided by Emmeline and Christabel Pankhurst of the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU). The WFL had strong support in Scotland and opened a Suffrage Centre at 302 Sauchiehall Street, moving to St George's Road in 1912. Like other political groups they sold newspapers and other literature, went on lecture tours, organised public meeting and held fundraising jumble sales and bazaars. In the summer holidays the WFL went "doon the watter" to their summer HQ in Rothesay and campaigned along the coast.

The WFL differed from the WSPU in its preference for civil disobedience rather than militant action. The WFL believed that there should be "no taxation without representation" and encouraged its members to withhold taxes. Many members also refused to participate in the 1911 Census, staying away from home so that they could not be counted.

Reference: 930.2001.26

Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums

Keywords:
civil disobedience, fashions, Glasgow Green, parks, political activists, political demonstrations, suffragettes, WFL, women, Women's Freedom League, Women's Social and Political Union, WSPU



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