Josephine Butler to [Mrs Tanner and Miss Priestman]

Scope and Content

Written from London. Asking if any of them can come up for a great indignation meeting at Exeter Hall on the following Thursday. 'I fear the Government suppression through Mr Smith of the circulation of the Pall Mall to the country has prevented you knowing what has happened' . She and Mrs Booth are to hold a meeting of women on Monday morning. Notes how the Protection of Girls' Bill passed last night 'on top of the wave of popular anger'.

Administrative / Biographical History

[Friday] 10 Jul [1885] 'There is to be a great indignation meeting at Exeter Hall Thursday evening next.' As a result of the Pall Mall Gazette articles of 6-9 Jul, meetings were held all over England, Stead himself taking the lead in many of them. Parliament yielded to pressure, and the Criminal Law Amendment Bill shelved for several years was hastily rushed through both Houses and received the Royal Assent 14 Aug 1885. (For further details see Note to letter of 26 Jul 1885 JB to Mr Naish) 'The Govt suppression through Mr Smith of the circulation of the Pall Mall to the country.' This would be W H Smith who had the virtual monopoly of railway station bookstalls and circulation of periodicals. 'Mrs Booth': The Salvation Army took a prominent part with WT Stead both in the investigation into the vice market and in holding public meetings to arouse public interest and indignation. Mrs Booth wife of the General, was an ardent supporter of the Abolitionist Cause and joined in their meetings. Biog:Mrs Booth: WH Smith.