Chronography of Women�s Rights and Female Equality

Page last modified 27 August 2023


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Male-Female Literacy Differential Map. Compare the relative literacy levels for women and men across the world. Overall adult literacy rates here.


See also Female Enfranchisement dates by country


First entry of women to selected roles and careers


(For Abortion and Birth Control see Morals).


What constitutes sexual harassment � chart by age, sex and country


Appendix 2 - Family Legal Rights � children, divorce, property (For Abortion and Birth Control see Morals).


Women�s Rights and Equality

9 October 2012, The Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai was shot in the head whilst travelling home on a school bus, for insisting that girls had a right to education. She survived, continued campaigning, and in 2014 became the youngest person to date to receive the Nobel prize.

4 February 2006, Betty Friedan, US campaigner for women�s rights, died.

9 April2005, Andrea Dworkin, feminist, died (born 26 September 1946)

23 June 1990, Inna Shevchenko, Ukrainian radical feminist was born in Kherson.

26 February 1986, The European Court ruled that the retirement age for men and women should be the same. The British Government did nothing to equalise retirement ages or pension rights.

27 December 1975, In the UK, the Sex Discrimination Act and the Equal Pay Act came into force.

6 March 1971. Over 4,000 women�s liberation marchers demonstrated in London. They marched from Hyde Park to 10 Downing Street.

9 February 1970, The UK Parliament said men and women would receive equal pay by 1976.

% of US women who are in paid employment


All women

Unmarried women

Married women





















11 February 1969. In the UK, female workers at the Ford car plant won equal pay with male workers.

27 September 1960, Death of Estelle Sylvia Pankhurst, suffragette.

1958, In Morocco, women were now allowed to choose their own husbands and polygamy was restricted.

13 February 1958, The suffragette, Dame Christobel Pankhurst, daughter of Emmeline Pankhurst, died (born 1880).

1 January 1958, In Tunisia, polygamy was abolished.

4 March 1955, The Burnham Commission recommended equal salaries for men and women teachers; another step towards equality of pay between the sexes.

16 June 1953, Margaret Bondfield, British Women�s Rights activist, died aged 80.

16 May 1952. The British Parliament voted in favour of equal pay for women.

1949, Death of Sarojini Naidu, Indian feminist, politician and poet. Born in 1879, she campaigned for the abolition of purdah. She was Governor of the United Provinces (now Uttar Pradesh) from Indian independence in 1947.

26 September 1946, Andrea Dworkin, feminist, was born (died 9 April2005)

March 1946, The UK Government now allowed women to become diplomats � but only if they remained unmarried.

6 December 1933. Germany planned to abolish women�s suffrage.

27 August 1933, Joke Smit, Dutch feminist, was born.

5 August 1929, Millicent Garrett Fawcett, British feminist activist, died aged 82.

14 June 1928. Emmeline Pankhurst, suffragette, born 13 February 1858, died.

7 May 1928. In Britain, women aged between 21 and 30 won equal suffrage in elections. This was known as the �flapper�s vote�. The women�s voting age in Britain had previously been 30.

<ay 1926, Women in India were now eligible to stand for election to public office.

1925, In Britain the Guardianship of Infants Act equalised the righst of access to children of both mother and father when divorced. Previously men could override access by the mother if they wished.

8 December 1923. In the UK 8 women were now MPs. The British general election resulted in a hung Parliament.

18 July 1923, In Britain, the Matrimonial Causes Act gave women equality in divorce cases.

1920, Death of Inessa Armand (born 1875) champion of women�s rights in Soviet Russia. She became a political ally of Lenin in 1905, and in 1919 set up Zhenotdel, the women�s section of the Societ Communist Party, shortly before dying of cholera and overwork. Zhenotdel continued until 1930.

23 December 1919, In Britain, the Sex Disqualification (Removal) Bill was passed, opening up many professions to women.

14 December 1918, Women aged over 30 voted in a General Election in Britain for the first time. Women could also stand as candidates in UK General Elections for the first time. 17 stood but only one was elected.

19 September 1918, In Britain a Government commission investigated equal pay for women.

19 June 1917, Large Commons vote in favour of giving women over 30 the vote.

29 March 1917, In Britain, Lloyd George announced plans to give women over 30 the vote.

1 January 1916, In Britain, women�s employment had risen by two million over the past 12 months.

10 November 1915, A survey showed that women working in UK factories have enabled production to rise by 250%.

11 September 1915. The first Women�s Institute in Britain was formed, in Anglesey, Wales.The first Women�s Institute was founded in Canada in 1897.

24 January 1915. 1,000 British suffragettes arrived in France to fill factory jobs vacated by men away on the Front.

11 June 1914. Bomb outrage by suffragettes in Westminster Abbey.

10 June 1914, Sylvia Pankhurst was arrested for the 8th time.

1 June 1914. Suffragettes burned down a church near Henley on Thames.

22 May 1914. Suffragettes protested outside Buckingham Palace. Emmeline Pankhurst was arrested as she tried to present a petition.

6 May 1914. The House of Lords rejected the Women's Enfranchisement Bill.

17 April1914. A suffragette bomb destroyed the pier at Great Yarmouth.

10 March 1914. Suffragettes rioted in London. Mary Richardson, militant suffragette, attacked Velasquez�s Rokeby Venus in London�s National Gallery with a meat cleaver.

3 January 1914. The suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst was re-arrested. This was under the �Cat and Mouse� Act which enabled the UK government to release suffragette hunger strikers from prison so they would not die and become martyrs, only to re-arrest them when they recovered.

4 December 1913, Emmeline Pankhurst was arrested at Plymouth on her return from the USA.

20 October 1913, Emmeline Pankhurst was released as US President Wilson reversed her deportation order.

8 July 1913, Sylvia Pankhurst sentenced to three months in prison.

14 June 1913, Funeral of Emily Davidson, suffragette, see 4 June 1913.

4 June 1913, Emily Davidson, a suffragette, born 1872, was trampled when she fell under King George V�s horse, Anner, at Tattenham Corner in the Derby Races, Epsom.She died from her inquiries on 8 June 1913, and her funeral was on 14 June 1913. She intended only to grab the horse�s reins as it approached the winning post, but her publicity stunt went tragically wrong.

15 May 1913, The Home Secretary banned public meetings by suffragettes.

7 May 1913. A suffragette bomb was found in St Paul�s Cathedral.

15 April1913, The UK Government banned public meetings by suffragettes, on the grounds of a risk to public order.

3 April1913. The suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst was jailed for 3 years for inciting her supporters to place bombs at Lloyd George�s house.

2 March 1913. A mob attacked suffragettes in London's Hyde Park.

25 February 1913. In the UK, suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst went on trial accused of the bomb explosion at Lloyd Georges house (19 February 1913). Mrs Pankhurst founded the Women�s Social and Political Union (WSPU) in 1903 to press for voting rights for British women; women in Australia and New Zealand already had the vote. The WSPU was adopting increasingly militant tactics.

19 February 1913, A bomb exploded at Lloyd George�s house; nobody was hurt. On 24 February 1913 Emmeline Pankhurst was arrested in connection with this incident.

5 February 1913, Sylvia Pankhurst began a hunger strike whilst in prison.

28 January 1913, Suffragette demonstrations in London following the withdrawal of a Parliamentary Bill on 27 January 1913 to which an amendment for women�s suffrage might have been added.

16 November 1912. Suffragettes, who had walked from Edinburgh to London, presented a petition to the Prime Minister.

28 June 1912, The suffragettes began a window-smashing campaign at Post Offices and Labour Exchanges.

25 June 1912, Asquith was attacked in the Commons over the force-feeding of suffragettes on hunger strike in prison.

5 March 1912, British police raided the offices of the Women�s Social and Political Union.

4 March 1912, 96 women were arrested after a suffragette raid on the House of Commons.

1 March 1912, Suffragettes smashed windows in the West End of London. Co-ordinated attacks by groups of women with stones or hammers hidden under their muffs saw a trail of destruction emerge within 20 minutes from Oxford Street to The Strand and Picadilly;two women also threw stones at 10 Downing Street. 120 were arrested, including Emmeline Pankhurst. Suffragette militancy had increased after they saw the Government grant concessions to striking railworkers and miners, after strikes had escalated into civil disorder.

3 January 1912, The UK Cabinet was divided over votes for women.

1911, A Japanese Women�s Liberation Movement was started by Racho Hiratsuka.

21 November 1911, Suffragette riots in Whitehall, London.

1 November 1911. The first edition of Woman�s Weekly was published. See 2 November 1903, Daily Mirror as woman�s newspaper.

17 June 1911. In the UK, 60,000 women demonstrated for women�s suffrage, marching through London to a meeting at the Albert Hall.

18 November 1910, Black Friday, when 119 suffragettes stormed the House of Commons. Mrs Mary Clarke, sister of Emmeline Pankhurst, and Cecelia Wolsey Haig both died as a result of this incident, The next day Winston Churchill ordered that charges against 100 women from this episode be dropped.

14 November 1910. There were more than 100 arrests when suffragettes tried to storm the House of Commons.

28 September 1909. London confirmed that suffragettes were being force-fed.

29 June 1909. 120 suffragettes arrested outside the Houses of Parliament, London.

9 February 1909. In London a court ruled that a woman could not have a divorce even if her husband had deserted her.

22 December 1908. In New York, Katie Mulcaney became the first woman arrested under a new law prohibiting women from smoking in public.

24 October 1908. The suffragettes Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughter Christabel were jailed.

21 October 1908. Over London the suffragettes made the first ever leaflet raid, hiring an airship and throwing out leaflets demanding �Votes for Women!�.

September 1908, Mr Herbert Elvin of the National Union of Clerks expressed unease at female clerks who were typically paid �1.00 to �1.50 per week undercutting the wages of male clerks who typically were paid �1.60 to �3 a week. Much the same argument had been raised by White labourers in the USA a few decades earlier who opposed the emancipation of slaves, fearing they would constitute cheaper unskilled labour.

30 June 1908. Suffragettes attempted to present a petition to the UK Prime Minister. When he refused, windows at his residence were broken.

21 June 1908, A crowd of 230,000 in Hyde Park demonstrated for votes for women.

15 June 1908The World congress for Women's Rights opens in Amsterdam

13 June 1908, Suffragettes staged a march from The Embankment to the Albert Hall.

11 February 1908, Suffragettes attempted to force entry to the House of Commons.

17 January 1908, Suffragettes raided 10 Downing Street, London, during a Cabinet meeting.

16 November 1907. Suffragettes shouted down Herbert Asquith, Chancellor of the Exchequer, at a meeting in Warwickshire. An Act was passed in 1907 allowing women to sit as councillors, but they still lacked the vote. Despite divisions within the Women�s Social and Political Union, with some members seeing Mrs Pankhurst as too domineering, the campaign for female suffrage continued unabated.

10 October 1907, Demonstrations and strikes in Budapest, Hungary, as Parliament opened there, demanding universal adult suffrage.

22 March 1907. 75 suffragettes jailed in Britain for refusing to pay fines.

8 March 1907, Keir Hardie�s Women�s Enfranchisement Bill was defeated in the House of Commons.

13 February 1907, A large crowd of suffragettes stormed the Houses of Parliament as they attempted to hand a petition to the Government. It took a battalion of mounted police five hours to subdue the demonstration; 57 suffragettes were arrested, including Emmeline and Christine Pankhurst, but 15 of them did manage to enter the Commons.

1906, Attitude to women workers at Triumph bicycle factory, 1906

25 December 1906, Suffragettes in London�s Holloway Prison refused Christmas meals

6 November 1906. Sylvia Pankhurst, suffragette, released from prison.

24 October 1906. 11 suffragettes were jailed for demonstrating in London, after refusing to pay �10 fines, or even acknowledge the court. Prison achieved martyrdom for the women.

23 October 1906, Women suffragettes demonstrated in the outer lobby of the House of Commons. 10 were arrested and charged the following day.

23 June 1906, A deputation demanding votes for women, representing 500,000 women, met the British Prime Minister.

14 June 1906, In the UK, a Parliamentary Bill was proposed to ban women from dangerous sports after a woman died in a parachuting accident.

17 April1906. The British Labour Party called for universal female suffrage.

13 March 1906, Susan B Anthony, American pioneer of women�s suffrage, died aged 86.

14 February 1906, 54 were arrested as suffragettes fought police outside the British Parliament.

14 December 1905, UK Trade Unions called for universal suffrage, an eight hour working day, and old age pensions.

14 October 1905. The suffragettes Emmeline Pankhurst and Annie Kenney opted to go to prison for seven days rather than pay a fine for assaulting a policeman. The assault was at a political meeting at the Free Trade Hall in Manchester, where a leading Liberal politician, Sir Edward Grey, was making a speech.

8 August 1905, The Magazine Good House Keeping reported that three out of every four wives had to beg their husbands for more money; the Daily Mail, progressively, asked men to consider how they would feel in this situation.

12 May 1905. A Bill to give British women the right to vote failed; it was talked out of time. Under Parliamentary rules, a Bill is lost if MPs are still debating it when the House is due to adjourn.

1904, Death of Raden Adjeng Kartini, Javanese aristocrat who was one of the first agitators for equal rights for Indonesian women. Born 1879, she died soon after the birth of her first child.

2 November 1903. The Daily Mirror was first published in London, Britain, intended as a daily paper for women. See 1 November 1911, Woman�s Weekly first published.

19 October 1903, At 62 Nelson Street, Chorlton in Medlock, near Manchester, the home of Emmeline Pankhurst, the WSPU (Women�s Social and Political Union) was officially founded; its motto �Deeds not Words, to fight for female suffrage. In 1987 it became the Pankhurst Centre.

10 October 1903, Mrs Emmeline Pankhurst formed the Women�s Social and Political Union to fight for female emancipation in Britain.�Deeds not Words� was the motto of the new group, after efforts to persuade some MPs to back Parliamentary reform bore no fruit.

5 May 1902, The Prussian Government banned women�s political groups.

18 February 1902, In Britain, a petition demanding votes for women was presented to Parliament by over 37,000 female textile workers.

2 January /1902, Women's foot-binding was outlawed in China.

1901, The UK Census now showed 212 women doctors, 2 women architects, and a few female clerks and assistants in the legal, banking and insurance sectors.. However many jobs and professions remained closed to women.

1900, In Britain the 1899 London Government Act, which had excluded women from being members of Metropolitan borough Councils, was now amended to admit them.

3/1900, German women petitioned the Reichstag to be allowed to attend university and sit State examinations.

31 May 1895, Emily Faithfull died (born 1835), In 1863 she began publishing a monthly periodical, The Victoria Magazine, campaigning for the right of women to remunerative employment.

11 June 1891, Barbara Bodichon, who promoted education and other rights for women, died in Robertsbridge Sussex (born in Watlington, Norfolk 8 April1827).

1897, In Britain the National Union of Women�s Suffrage Societies was set up, an umbrella group of existing Suffrage Societies with Mrs Millicent Fawcett as President.

20 March 1897, Emily Anne Eliza Shirreff, English pioneer of higher education for women, died in London (born 3 November 1814)

1894, In Britain, the Local Government Act gave women the right to vote in parish council elections.

2 November 1889, Suffragettes Susan B Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton were arrested whilst attempting to vote in the national elections.

4 May 1882, Suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst was born

2 November 1880, The suffragettes Susan B Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton attempted to vote in an election in New Jersey, USA, but were stopped by a polling booth inspector.

22 September 1880, The suffragette Christobel Pankhurst was born, the daughter of Emmeline.

1870, The Women�s Suffrage Journal was founded by Lydia Ernestine Becker (1827-1890).

26 November 1867, Mrs Lily Maxwell of Manchester, who had been placed on the electoral register by mistake, was escorted buy a police bodyguard to the voting booth to protect her from opponents to women�s suffrage.

9 January 1859, Carrie Chapman, suffragette, was born.

14 July 1858, The suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst was born in Manchester, as Emmeline Goulden.

1857, Barbara Bodichon, English campaigner for womnen�s rights, suffrage and education, wrote Women and Work.

1850, In Britain the Factory Act now limited the times of day that women and young persons could be employed. They could onlywork between 6am and 6pm, with 1 hour break for meals. In 1853 a new Factory Act extended the compulsory meal break for children to 1 � hours.

8 June 1847. Britain passed the Factory Act, limiting the working day of women and children aged 13 to 18 to ten hours.

See also Child Welfare.

10 March 1847, Kate Sheppard, suffragist, was born.

1844, The UK Factories Act prohibited the employment of all women (aged 18 and over), and youths of bothsexes aged between 13 and 18, from working more than 12 hours a day in textiles factories

21 January 1840, Sophia Jex-Blake, champion of women�s rights, was born.

8 April1827, Barbara Bodichon, who promoted education and other rights for women, was born in Watlington, Norfolk (died in Robertsbridge Sussex, 11 June 1891).

3 November 1814, Emily Anne Eliza Shirreff, English pioneer of higher education for women, was born (died 20 March 1897 in London)

10 September 1797, Mary Wollstonecraft, early feminist and author of Vindication and the Rights of Woman, died this day.

1792, Mary Wollstonecraft published �Vindication of the Rights of Women�, setting out the need for equality of women in politics and civil life.

27 April1759, Birth of Mary Wollstonecraft, English writer, political radical and feminist.

27 June 1693. The Ladies Mercury, the first magazine for women, was published.

16 April1689, Death of Aphra Benn, British novelist and early feminist.


Women�s Rights and Equality � France

28 May 1922, Julie Siegfried, French women's rights leader, died aged 74.

28 November 1909, In France, a law was passed giving pregnant women 8 weeks maternity leave.

6 June 1908. France passed a law decreeing that divorce was automatic after three year�s separation.

9 January 1908, Simone de Beauvoir, French feminist writer and philosopher, was born (died 1986).

1900, In France, the maximum daily work hours of women and childrenlegally limited to 11.

10 October 1793, A feminist revolutionary society, set up in 5/1792 in France, was banned. Its leaders, Claire Lacombe and Pauline Leon, were imprisoned. The society had called for the right of French women to participate in the military and politics. Revolutionary France had earlier decreed that women, minors, the insane and criminals could not be full citizens.

1317, The Salic Law in France prohibited women from succeeding to the throne.


Women�s Rights and Equality - USA

29 January 1993. The US Census Bureau announced that the number of women in managerial jobs had risen 95% between 1980 and 1990, to 6.2 million.

1972, The first rape crisis centres were opened in the USA.

1/1970, San Diego College, USA, put on the world�s first Woman�s Studies programme. Cornell followed suit in 1970, by 1972 some 78 US HE institutions offered the subject,and by 2000 there were over 700 Women�s Studies departments in the USA alone. The studies raised the profile of feminism, and of women in academia. Gender Studies, often incorporating Queer Studies, is the successor to this programme in the 21st century.

26 August 1970, A National Women�s Strike caused chaos in New York.

10 June 1963, The USA passed the Equal Pay Act, forcing employers to pay the same rate to men and women doing the same-skilled job for the same number of hours.

1922, US magazine Vanity Fair coined the term �flapper� for a young woman who abjured femininity, dressed provocatively, and smoked.

4 February 1921, Betty Friedan was born, as Betty Naomi Goldstein, in Peoria, Illinois. She was a leading US feminist, and organised the Women�s Strike for Equality (26 August 1970) to raise awareness of feminist issues.

8 September 1916, US President Woodrow Wilson promised women the vote.

7 September 1916, Clara Bewick Colby, US suffragist and founder of The Woman's Tribune, died.

12 January 1915. The US Congress defeated a Bill for women's suffrage.

20 October 1914, US birth control promoter Margaret Sanger was forced to flee to Canada.

3 March 1913, 5,000 US suffragettes marched along Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington DC. Angrt men jeered and assaulted the women, starting a brawl which took 40 cavalry troops to suppress.

1906, The Physical Director at Harvard University suggested that sports such as netball, lacross and hockey might be damaging to women�s health; others believed the same about cycling. The underlying concern, as with women�s education and women in work, was that they might bear fewer children, and so provide less people for populating the areas where White people were colonising, such as the Western USA and the British Empire.

6/1906, Results of a US census showed that women could now be found in trades sich as blacksmiths, architects, undertakers, journalisats, barbers and house-painters. The UK Daily Mail article describing this was entitled �Queer Trades for Women�.

26 October 1902, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, American leader of the women�s suffrage movement, died aged 86.

30 December 1894, Amelia Bloomer, American social reformer, campaigner for temperance and women�s rights, died.

18 October 1893, Lucy Stone, American campaigner for women�s rights, died.

24 May 1879, William Lloyd Harrison, American campaigner for abolition of slavery and for women�s suffrage, died in New York.

8 May 1874, Massachusetts legislated to limit women�s work days to 10 hours.

1 January 1868, In New York, Susan B Anthony began publication of a suffragist journal called The Revolution.

19 July 1848. At the first women�s rights convention, at Seneca Falls, New York State, female rights campaigner Amelia Bloomer, born on 27 May 1818 in New York, introduced �bloomers� to the world. She described these as �the lower part of a rational female dress�. The wearing of trousers by a woman caused much concern. She was campaigning for women�s equality in voting, religion, marriage, work, education, and society. New York, in 1848, passed the Married Women�s Property Act allowing divorced women to keep some of their possessions.

15 February 1820, Susan Anthony, American social reformer and champion of women�s suffrage, was born in Adams, Massachusetts.

13 August 1818, Lucy Stone, US feminist and reformer, was born in West Brookfield, Massachusetts.

27 May 1818, Amelia Bloomer, women�s� rights campaigner, was born in Homer, New York (died 30 December 1894). She designed the loose trousers for women now known as bloomers.

12 November 1815, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, US women�s rights campaigner, was born in Johnstown, New York, as Elizabeth Cady.


Appendix 2 - Family Legal Rights � children, divorce, property (For Abortion and Birth Control see Morals).

2004, Divorce was legalised in Chile.

27 February 1997, Divorce became legal in Ireland. See 27 June 1986.

27 November 1995, In Ireland, voters narrowly approved a limited no-fault provision for divorce, for couples who had lived apart for four of the previous five years, by a majority of 9,114 out of 1.63 million votes. There had been a constitutional ban on divorce since 1937.

1991, Colombia legalised divorce.

23 October 1991. The House of Lords ruled that men could be legally convicted of raping their wives. The group Women Against Rape had been campaigning for this move since 1977.

19 April1991. English legal history was made in Winchester when the first man to be convicted of raping his wife whilst they were still living together was jailed for 5 years.

27 June 1986, In a referendum, 63% of Irish voters rejected a proposal to amend the Constitution so as to permit divorce. See 27 February 1997.

1981. Divorce became legal again in Spain. See 16 October 1931.

18 December 1970. Divorce became legal in Italy.

13 June 1969, In the UK, the Divorce Law Reform Bill received its third reading. It provided for a divorce after 2 years separation with mutual consent, or after five years without this consent. �Irretreivable breakdown� was now acceptable as grounds for ending a marriage, without either party having to prove �blame�, e.g. adultery.

1968, In Italy, grounds for divorce on the basis of infidelity were made equal between the two sexes. Previously, any female infidelity was grounds for divorce, but male infidelity had to be �open and notorious�.

1963, Married women in France were now allowed to open their own bank account without their hussband�s permission.

1962, Marital rape became a criminal offence in Sweden.

1958, In Morocco, women gained the right to choose their own husbands, and polygamy in the country was restricted.

14 December 1954, Divorce was legalised in Argentina.

9 March 1951. In the UK, separation for seven years was made grounds for divorce.

28 October 1943. The UK Court of Appeal ruled that money saved from the housekeeping by a wife belonged to the husband.

1938, The property of married women in France was no longer administered by their husbands; they no longer required their husband�s permission to work or go to university. French women were now allowed to testify in a Court of Law.

23 July 1937, In the UK, the Matrimonial Causes Act added new grounds for divorce (insanity and desertion) to the existing one of adultery.

1933, In Sweden, women were allowed to practise law.

16 October 1931. Spain legalised divorce. See 1981.

10 March 1929. Egyptian women were granted limited rights of divorce.

27 August 1927, Emily Gowan Murphy (maiden name Ferguson, born 14 March 1868 in Cookstown, Ontario), petitioned the Canadian Government to have women recognised as full legal �persons�. She had been instrumental in passing the Dower Act (1911),giving women a share in their husband�s property, and in 1916 Murphy had been appointed as the first woman magistrate in the British Empire. However on her first day as magistrate, a lawyer challenged her appointment as illegal as she was not a �person� under Canadian law. Murphy began a legal battle to overturn this law, petitioning the Canadian Government this day. On 14 March 1928 the Supreme Court of Canada decided against Murphy and four other campaigners, Nellie McClung, Irene Parlby, Henrrietta Muir andLouise McKinney. The�Famous Five� took their case to the British Privy Council, where they finally won on 18 October 1929. Murphy died of diabetes in 1933.

1925, In Britain the Married Women�s Property Act required husband and wife to be treated as separate persons with regard to property transactions

8 June 1923, In the UK, wives were now allowed to divorce their husbands for adultery. See 1857.

2 March 1923, In Britain the Matrimonial Causes Bill, passed by 231 votes to 27, changed the inequality whereby a man could divorce his wife simply for adultery, but a woman had to prove cruelty or desertion as well.

1921, Sweden passed the Marriage Act stipulating that all income and property of a couple had to be pooled equally upon marriage.

1911, Canada passed the Dower Act, securting women a share in their husband�s property, see 27 August 1927.

27 November 1910, Pregnant French women were now legally entitled to 8 weeks leave from work.

1907, Married women in France were allowed complete control of their wages. Before this date a married woman coukd not draw a wage but her pay had to go to her husband.

1886, In Britain the Guardianship of Infants Act provided for women to be sole guardians of their children if their husband died.

1884, In Britain, the Married Women�s Property Act made married women no longer �chattels� of their husband but independent persons.

1882, In Britain, the Married Women�s Property Act allowed women to own and administer their own property.

1873, In Britain the Custody of Infants Act extended access to children to all divorced or separated women (see 1839).

9 August 1870, In Britain the Married Women�s Property Act was passed. It allowed women to retain �200 (around �70,000 in 2000 terms) of their own earnings.

1857, In Britain the Matrimonial Causes Act set up divorce courts, where women could obtain a divorce. A woman who obtained a judicial separation order or was granted a protection order on grounds of desertion by the man now had the sdame rights as an unmarried woman respecting property. However this Act actually made divorce easier for men, as they now did not have to obtain an expensive Private Act of Parliament. Unlike a man, a woman had to prove desertion, adultery or �unnatural conduct� to obtain dovorce. Only from 1923 could a woman obtain a dovorce, on grounds of simp,e adultery, as a man could, see 8 June 1923.

1839, In Britain the Custody of Infants Act gave mothers �of unblemished character� access to their children in the event of separation or divorce. See 1873.

1839, Mississippi became the first US State to grant married women rights over their own property. Formerly. Women had forfeited all property rights to their husband upon marriage.


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