II-105875 | Mrs. George A. Drummond, Montreal, QC, 1894

Mrs. George A. Drummond, Montreal, QC, 1894
Wm. Notman & Son
1894, 19th century
Silver salts on glass - Gelatin dry plate process
17 x 12 cm
Purchase from Associated Screen News Ltd.
© McCord Museum
Keywords:  female (19035) , Photograph (77678) , portrait (53878)
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Keys to History

Demanding political rights was so controversial that the first women's suffrage organization in Canada was initially called the Toronto Women's Literary Club so as not to arouse controversy. Through charity and church volunteer work, middle-class English-Canadian women gained the experience they needed to organize a campaign to lobby for the dismantling of all laws barring women from full participation in local and national political affairs.

Dissatisfied with having to rely on men to vote for the policies they believed would be most beneficial, women argued that they should be permitted to speak for themselves. Gaining the right to vote was just one way the suffragists hoped to exercise political power.

By the 1880s, the issue of the vote for women was being openly debated in newspapers, taverns and churches throughout the country. One of the most successful tactics used by the pro-female suffrage forces was political theatre. Satirical mock parliaments, in which women dismissed the pleas of male citizens for the right to vote, were held in Manitoba, Ontario and British Columbia. The first one was recorded in Winnipeg in 1893.

Source : Straitlaced: Restrictions on Women [Web tour], by Elise Chenier, McGill University (see Links)

  • What

    Lady Julia Drummond was active in a variety of philanthropic and social reform organizations.

  • Where

    Born Grace Julia Parker in 1861, she lived most her life in Montreal.

  • When

    This portrait was taken in 1894, the same year she and her husband, Senator George A. Drummond, opened the Home for Incurables.

  • Who

    Lady Julia Drummond was the first president of the Montreal branch of the National Council of Women.