Item BCA - 2017.1289 - Elections at the start of the twentieth century

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BCA - 2017.1289

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Elections at the start of the twentieth century

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  • 1906 (Creation)

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pdf of 2 photographs and 3 documents

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The first photograph is taken outside the Talbot in the Market Square and the name W Norman can be seen on the Talbot sign as the Licencee and Norman is standing by the stack of the steam engine with his hands in his pockets. Tory supporters hired a steam engine and men, boys, women and girls are gathered on and around it in front of the Talbot Inn; everyone whether man, boy, girl or woman is wearing a hat which was usual at that period in time. The 1906 General Election was won by the Liberals, led by Prime Minister Henry Campbell-Bannerman and was associated with social and constitutional change. If it eventually led to a succession of landmark measures that may, collectively, mark the origins of the welfare state, little of this outcome was clear to the 83 per cent of the total British electorate who cast a vote in January 1906. The cutting from the Witney Gazette must be a few years after 1920 because that is when the War Memorial was dedicated and it refers to good weather at every Armistice Day; it talks about several political meetings and there's a fascinating piece of social history at the end which states that cars took people to the voting booths. The little document beginning No6 is an extract from an album of old folks' memories which J L Hughes Owens collected in the 1970s. Miss Mary Morris, the daughter of William Morris (of car fame and later to become Lord Nuffield) came to Bampton at the time of the 1910 general election to promote the cause of the Suffragettes. She didn't get much joy in Bampton but it was noted, with some surprise, that she still appeared to be a lady and lady-like despite what she was doing. Parson Rodwell was surprised and quietly delighted. Drunks from the Wheat Sheaf went to heckle her and have fun, but were clearly won over by her manner and left by tipping their caps to her. In the photograph, she is seen accompanied by a policeman outside the school in Church View.

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