100 years ago today (6th Feb), the U.K. passed the Representation of People Act 1918 which allowed women over 30 who owned property to vote for the very first time.
In today's blog we share seven facts you may not known about one of the Titanic's most famous and beloved survivors, Mrs Margaret (Molly) Brown (who inspires a character in our Murder Mystery event) who fought for human rights and particularly women's right to vote in America throughout her life.
1. Margaret became a founding member of the Denver Woman's Club in 1894, part of a network of clubs which advocated literacy, education, suffrage, and human rights in Colorado and throughout the United States.
2. She raised funds to build the Cathedral of Immaculate Conception as well as St. Joseph's Hospital, and worked with Judge Ben Lindsey to help destitute children and establish the first Juvenile Court in the country, which eventually became the basis for today's U.S. juvenile court system.
3. Margaret Brown was one of the first women in the United States to run for political office, and ran for the Senate eight years before women even had the right to vote.
4. After Titanic struck the iceberg, Margaret helped load others into lifeboats and eventually was forced to board lifeboat six. She and the other women in lifeboat six worked together to row, keep spirits up, and dispel the gloom.
5. By the time Carpathia (the ship which rescued many Titanic survivors) reached New York harbor, Margaret had helped establish the Survivor's Committee, been elected as chair, and raised almost $10,000 for destitute survivors. Margaret's language skills in French, German, and Russian were an asset, and she remained on Carpathia until all Titanic survivors had met with friends, family, or medical/emergency assistance.
6. In a letter to her daughter shortly after the Titanic sinking, she wrote:
"After being brined, salted, and pickled in mid ocean I am now high and dry... I have had flowers, letters, telegrams-people until I am befuddled. They are petitioning Congress to give me a medal... If I must call a specialist to examine my head it is due to the title of Heroine of the Titanic."
Her sense of humor prevailed; to her attorney in Denver she wired:
"Thanks for the kind thoughts. Water was fine and swimming good. Neptune was exceedingly kind to me and I am now high and dry."
7. Following the Titanic sinking, Margaret used her new fame as a platform to talk about issues that deeply concerned her: labor rights, women's rights, education and literacy for children, and historic preservation. During World War I, she worked with the American Committee for Devastated France to help rebuild devastated areas behind the front line, and worked with wounded French and American soldiers.
I hope you've enjoyed this blog! Feel free to share in order to raise awareness of Molly's often overlooked work.
Book tickets for 'Murder on the Titanic!' at the Butterfly & The Pig in Glasgow city centre on April 14th 2018.