• Entry type: Organisation
  • Entry ID: AWE0736

Victorian Woman’s Suffrage League

(From 1894 – 1908)
  • Occupation Women's Rights Organisation


The Victorian Woman’s Suffrage League was founded in 1894 at a meeting organised by Annette Bear Crawford in the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union headquarters in Melbourne. Its platform was votes for women on the same terms as men. Its formation was prompted by the belief that the three existing groups working for women’s suffrage in Victoria (the Australian Women’s Suffrage Society, the Victorian Women’s Suffrage Society and the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union) were all associated with extremist views. Although initiated by the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, the League had an entirely separate existence, supposedly not linked to the prohibitionist agenda of the Union. The new League was formulated on a Christian, non-party basis. As such, it was an organisation that moderate women could comfortably join and was immediately popular. It ceased in 1908 with the granting of the vote to women in Victoria.


Archival note:
As of 2003, it appears that there is no specific collection of papers relating to the League. However, its activities are documented in the annual reports of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union of Victoria and other Union records, Its activities were also extensively reported in the Melbourne press and women’s journals, particularly, for the years 1900-1905, Vida Goldstein’s The Australian Woman’s Sphere.


Published resources

  • Book
    • Woman suffrage in Australia : a gift or a struggle?, Oldfield, Audrey, 1992
    • Votes for women : the Australian story, Lees, Kirsten., 1995
    • The Australian Woman's Sphere, 1900-1905
  • Thesis
    • The 'Woman Question' in Melbourne, 1880-1914, Kelly, Farley, 1983
  • Resource

Archival resources

  • Mitchell and Dixson Libraries Manuscripts Collection
    • [Papers on women's suffrage / compiled by Rose Scott.]↵↵↵↵↵↵↵↵[Papers on women's suffrage / compiled by Rose Scott.]

Related entries

  • Related Organisations
    • The Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Victoria (1885 - )
  • Affiliated
    • United Council for Woman Suffrage (1894 - 1908)