Museum of London: Votes for Women

Main Image: Poster parade organised by the Women's Freedom League to promote the suffrage message, 1907. Museum of London

Votes for Women at the Museum of London will see a year-long programme of exhibitions and events including the Votes for Women display, which will showcase the world’s largest Suffragette collection


The Votes for Women display, which opened last week and runs until 6 January 2019, features objects from the largest collection in the world on the militant campaign, donated to the museum in 1950 by the Suffragette Fellowship, founded in the 1920s to keep the women’s memory alive.

Dedicated to those who campaigned tirelessly for over 50 years to achieve votes for women, the exhibition features iconic objects from the museum’s vast Suffragette collection, including Emmeline Pankhurst’s hunger strike medal. At the heart of the display is a powerful, newly commissioned film that reflects on the contemporary relevance of the militant campaign that continues to inspire, shock and divide opinion

'The Appeal of Womanhood. We want the vote to stop the white slave traffic'. Propaganda poster used on the Edinburgh to London march of the Brown women in 1912. (c) Museum of London
This postcard, captioned 'The Appeal of Womanhood' was designed by Harold Bird to announce an anti-suffrage meeting at the Royal Albert Hall. (c) Museum of London

Shades of Suffragette Militancy, which also opened last wee and runs to 25 April shows how women from all backgrounds were drawn to the Suffragette campaign, often in awe of its charismatic leaders and daring tactics. The two militant organisations, the Women’s Social and Political Union and the Women’s Freedom League, developed a highly effective and innovative campaign style.

More than 1,300 women went to prison for their commitment to the Votes for Women cause. But the exhibition will aslo show that Suffragettes were not just militants, they were also successful fundraisers, accomplished organisers and inspirational speakers.