And what a voice! From the time she could speak, Nellie Letitia McClung (1873-1951) was crying out against injustice and calling for equality. Over the course of her lifetime, that voice boomed across the western provinces Nellie McClung called home and reverberated across Canada and around the world.
From humble beginnings in Ontario through the homesteader's trek West and her early years as a school-teacher in one-room Manitoba schools, to her success as a writer and public speaker, Nellie McClung refused to be silenced by social constraints or public criticism. From country church halls and legislative floors she passionately and eloquently called for reforms to Canadian liquor and labour laws and trumpeted the rights of women. Her persuasive, often humorous voice entered Canadian homes through the seventeen books she wrote and her countless syndicated newspaper columns. Nellie McClung put her words into political action.
She is perhaps best known for championing the famed "Persons" Case with four other female reformers -- the "Famous 5." As a result of their petition to the British Privy Council, women in Canada were legally declared to be "persons" in 1929. She was an outspoken Alberta MLA, first female member of the CBC Board of Governors, and she represented Canada at the League of Nations. She changed not only Canadian history but the course of women's lives. Nellie McClung's voice continues to echo today.
For more books on Canadian history and historical fiction about girls and women, visit our Canadian History section.
Margaret Macpherson holds a Masters Degree in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia and has worked as a teacher and journalist in Halifax, Bermuda, and Vancouver. She currently lives in Edmonton with her husband and four children.
|Recommended Age||9 - 14|
|Publication Date||Jan 1, 2003|