Thursday, January 20

The Book And Suffragette Coincidence

Mary Aldham picture
This is a coincidence I came across but as to whether there is any significance I'm not really sure.

I bought an old book at a car boot sale for 50p (about 70c) because of the title Natural Law In The Spiritual World and also because I simply like old books.

Mary Aldhan 1884When I got home I saw that it had been signed by the owner, Mary Aldham, way back in 1884.

I also noticed that this lady had made numerous sketches and drawings throughout the book.

As the cost was only 50p I hadn't bothered to flick through the pages previously. To my untrained eye the paintings look quite good - see at the top of this post and below.

Painting of Basle (Basel)
Sketch of the Alps Mary Aldham
All well and good but then looking through some other old bits and pieces I have hoarded - much to my wife's despair - was the poster below of a Mary Aldham!

Suffragette movement Mary Aldham
You can just make out that Mary Aldham is the photo on the left. It seems that she was part of the suffragette movement in Britain along with Ethel Cox. The story is that the two women caused damage to public art treasures and buildings and that others should be aware that they may try to perpetrate similar offences.

One of the aims of the Suffragette movement was 'votes for women' the most well known suffragettes probably being the Pankhurst family: Christabel, Emmeline and Sylvia Pankhurst. There is more information on the Suffragettes, which started in 1897, here.

Now I can't say for certain that the two mentioned Mary Aldhams are the same person - but the dates fit and I've got a 'feeling' they could well be.

If they are or not it's still a nice coincidence and, no matter how often things like this can happen, I find it fascinating. Coincidences sometimes seem to come about to bring 'things' to our attention.

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  1. What an interesting story, I wonder if they were one and the same...........

  2. They probably ARE one and the same. It's not like her last name is smith or jones! So now the question is, what's it mean? Maybe you're going to meet a mary aldham!?

  3. Anonymous19:18

    I think they are the same because of the art connection. I also wonder if the damage to public art treasures was a competitive angst thing...

    Her art in 1884 is good so I'm curious if the art damaged in (or after) 1897 were created by men. She may have considered them lower than her standards.

    The battle of the sexes through history is always fun for me to contemplate. :D

  4. oh, i LOVE this story - i'm a collector of old books too and of course, admire the women of yesteryear who blazed the paths for us - and i'm betting 70cents that the two women ARE the same -

  5. Anonymous13:09

    I have been trying to research Mary Aldham the suffragette, wondering whether she is a relative of mine. I came across this blog post after a google search. I love the idea that she owned that book of yours. Do you know any more about her?
    Natalie Aldham

    1. Natalie: Thank you for visiting my blog and leaving a comment about Mary Aldham.

      Unfortunately all I know is what I have written on this post.

      I bought the book in question, with Mary’s signature.. The suffragette information I got from the Internet. If this is your relative she looks to be a very interesting person. Any other questions please ask.

      Love your blog!

      Best wishes,