Suffragettes

Fact sheet about the Suffragettes

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The Suffragettes were formed as the Suffragists were not making
significant headway.
They campaigned for the same points as the Suffragists.
The WSPU (Women's Social and Political Union) was set up in 1903.
The leading members were Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughters.
Pankhurst and Kenney interrupted a political meeting and began to ask
Winston Churchill and Sir Edward Grey (liberal MPs) about their views on
the vote. They became more abusive when they received no replies and
when restrained by a police officer, attacked him. They were sent to prison
and this marks the point at which the Suffragettes began their militant
methods.
After 1909, the WSPU began to use violent methods to gain attention.
They chained themselves to railings.
They broke shop windows.
They set fire to buildings.
They interrupted important meetings.
They poured acid on golf courses.
Many were imprisoned yet they went on hunger strike as a further protest.
They were then force fed by the prison authorities.
The government passed the `Cat and Mouse Act' in 1913.
This allowed the Suffragettes to be released until they were fit to return to
prison.
In 1913, Emily Davidson was knocked down by the king's horse, Anmer.
This gained an immense amount of publicity although it unclear whether
her death was deliberate of accidental.
The Suffragettes had to stop their campaign at the start of World War I.

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