Josephine Butler to Mr Johnson

Scope and Content

Written from Winchester. Tells him of a meeting of the Federation Committee they had recently [see note] M. Humbert attended and Sir Henry Holland [see note] sent special communication to them. Hopes Mr Johnson and his wife will be able to attend the Federation Conference at Lausanne in Sep [see note]. Reference to case of Miss Cass [see note]. Perhaps he will be able to attend the Annual Meeting of the LNA on the 28 Jul at Lower Exeter Hall [see note].

Administrative / Biographical History

19 Jul [1887] 'We had a very interesting conference of the Federation last Friday ... and we were much pleased to have a communication direct from Sir Henry Holland written for our meeting.' The National Association for Repeal wound up its affairs at the time of the Repeal of the CD Acts in 1886, but it appointed a Committee affiliated to the International Federation to keep in touch with developments on the Continent. Sir Henry Holland (later Lord Knutsford) succeeded Stanhope as Sec of the Colonies, Jan 1887 and held that office till the fall of the Conservative Government in 1892. 'The difficulties [at Geneva] are rather more than we put in print, owing to the curious prejudices of the French Autonomist party, united with a strong little party in Geneva and another in Rome'. 'This discussions following Miss Cass's case will be useful and educating.' This case concerning the unjust treatment of Miss Cass, an obscure girl, a milliner's assistant has, as JB wrote in the 'Sentinel' (Aug 1887 p.98) 'all but upset the Home Secretary and has completely upset the supercilious contempt of the Govt.' The case illustrated the dangers of misuse of power by the police in the street and a timely warning against increasing that power. '... one of the good results that will flow from the unjust treatment of Miss Cass will be the immediate renewal of the agitation to make men who solicit in streets amenable to the law' (Sentinel Aug 1887 p.98) 'We should be very pleased to see you (and Mrs Johnson) at Lausanne in Sep.' This was the annual meeting of the International Conference of the Federation which met in 1887 at Lausanne. 'Conference we are to have on Thursday the 28th in the Exeter Hall at 2.30.' This was the Annual Meeting of the LNA for 1887. There was a morning meeting for business, ladies only followed by an afternoon conference at which JB presented and Mr Stansfeld and Prof Stuart (among others) spoke. (For further details see 'Sentinel' Aug 1887 p.98 and 108). Biog: Mr George William Johnson; Sir Henry Holland.