Josephine Butler to 'Dear Friends' [the Miss Priestmans]

Scope and Content

To say it was impossible for her to come to Bristol for domestic reasons; they had only just returned from her sister's funeral at Harrow, and their son Charles had had a very severe attack of fever and was coming home to be nursed. She asks her friend to see that 'meeting petitions' go to Mr Hopwood [see note] also to see that Mr Smith's letter be read aloud at the meeting [see note] for he is one 'who represents the new feeling, we hope, on social questions.'

Administrative / Biographical History

Saturday. [Feb 17 1883] 'Only got home on Thursday evening late from the Harrow funeral.' This was probably the death of the wife of Montagu Butler (Head Master of Harrow from 1859-1885) and brother of Canon Butler. There is no record of the death of any of JB's sisters in 1883. 'I will do all I can in support of Mr Hopwood's resolution.' Feb. 27 [Tues] 1883. 'Hopwood's motion condemning the compulsory examination of women under the CD Acts crowded out by debate on the Address.' (RR 437) Date of this letter therefore would probably be Saturday, 17 Feb 1883. 'Mr Smith is the liberal member for one of the largest constituencies in the country.' At a by-election in Dec 1882 Mr Samuel Smith was elected as a liberal for Liverpool. Biog: Mr Hopwood; Mr Samuel Smith MP; Mr Caine; Mrs Montagu Butler.