Census Working Overtime

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census

A suffragette sleepover, 1911.

A ‘can’t vote, won’t register’ sinister fringe.

Is your great granny among them?

Padraig O Morain writes:

Didn’t strike me until today that the Census of 1911, which Irish people pore over in search of their recent ancestors, excludes those suffragettes who refused to fill in the form because of the failure to extend the vote to women.
Refusal was illegal and at one meeting suffragettes informed a policeman present that they intended to hire submarines and airplanes to take them out of the country on census night…

Plans for night-time picnics in the Dublin mountains, so that they could evade the census takers (who, in Ireland, were policemen), didn’t materialise because of bad weather.

Some women did, however, sleep out in non-residential buildings that night so that they wouldn’t be home when the policeman called – the photo, above [supplied by the author] shows a group of them. The point, anyway, is that if you can’t find your great-granny in the Census returns she was probably a Women’s Libber.

Fight!

Census Day 1911 (The National Archives)

Thanks Ciaran

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