Josephine Butler to the Priestmans

Scope and Content

Written from Ewart Park, near Wooler, Northumberland.

Thanks for gifts.

'I have such a delightful letter from Ida Welhaven of Christiana telling me of a grand revolt of women against Dr Getz' proposal ... she has had a mass meeting of women resolving to resist all compromise ...'

(See letter dated 20 Apr 1894 and the preparation of a Law embodying compulsory examination of women drawn up by Dr Getz) The men all gave way to Dr Getz, but Welhaven 'had a mass meeting of women, resolving to resist all compromise, and the press of Norway is quite agitated about it'.

Administrative / Biographical History

As early as the beginning of Jan 1893 Josephine Butler began worrying about the counter movement started in medical circles and finding expression in 'Projets de Loi' drawn up by Dr Getz of Norway and circulating in all the Scandinavian countries and then in Germany. As Josephine Butler stated in a letter dated 13 Jan 1893 to the Priestmans: 'It seems as if the whole north of Europe were simmering with 'Projets de Loi' for the renewed enslavement of women, in which is included a complimentary address to the Federation'.

But while there were some good proposals in these Bills the fact that the compulsory examination of women was retained made them resist all the principles enunciated by the Federation in the Congress of 1877.

See letters and notes of 1893, Jan Manifesto of Ladies' National Association to our fellow women members of the Federation in the Northern countries of Europe; 13 Jan 1894, 20 Apr, 21 Apr and 26 Apr (AN Krier) 25 Jun.

Hence Josephine Butler's joy at the news of Ida Welhaven's success against Dr Getz.

Biog: Ida Welhaven, Dr Getz