Annie Kenney was a leading activist for the right of women to vote in the U.K. She lived a challenging life in the duty of her cause, too, suffering many significant ordeals for her beliefs. After one such incident, however, Kenney wrote a letter to her sister. And now that the message has been discovered over a century after it was written, it provides a fascinating and unique document of that time.
In 1868 the Free Trade Hall in the English city of Manchester was the site of the U.K.’s first open meeting to discuss the topic of women’s suffrage. Among the speakers at the event was scientist Lydia Becker, who was backed by barrister and women’s rights ally, Dr. Richard Pankhurst.