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Discrete CollectionsThe Women's Library
TitleAbadam; Alice (1856-1940); suffragist and feminist
Ref NoABADAM
Box Fetch NoBox 01-19; Box OS62; Badge Box 31
LevelCollection
Date1820-1974
Extent21 boxes
Admin Biographical HistoryAlice Abadam (1856-1940) was a prominent public speaker on women's suffrage and feminism. She was the youngest of seven children of Edward Abadam, High Sheriff of Carmarthenshire, and Louise Taylor Abadam. She met her lifelong companion, Dr Alice Vowe Johnson, while involved in social work and living in Carmarthen. She converted to Catholicism in her early twenties. In 1904 she moved to Upper Norwood, London with Dr Johnson and became involved in suffrage campaigning. She was a member of the Women's Social & Political Union (WSPU) (1906-1907), a founder member of the Women's Freedom League (1907), member of the Women Writers' Suffrage League, the Church League for Women's Suffrage, the Catholic Women's Suffrage Society (1913) and Chair of the Federated Council of Suffrage Societies (FCSS) (1914). She joined the National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies (NUWSS) in 1907 and was active as president of the Beckenham branch (later becoming the Norwood and District Women's Suffrage Society) throughout its existence. She was renowned as an excellent public speaker and toured Britain lecturing on behalf of the NUWSS and FCSS. In 1920 she founded the Feminist League, which met weekly to discuss feminist topics and provided a lending library service, until c1927. An active Catholic, as an older woman she assisted a persecuted order of Breton nuns, the White Sisters, to settle in Wales. In 1939 she returned to Wales (near Abergwili) where she died.

The Feminist League (1920-c1927) was founded by Alice Abadam. The members-only group (by annual subscription) had weekly evening meetings, chaired by Abadam, with visiting speakers from organisations such as the Actresses' Franchise League, the Salvation Army, the Women Engineers Society, the Animal Defence League, the National Federation of Women's Institutes and the Women's Election Committee. The League also ran a lending library.
DescriptionThese are the personal papers of Alice Abadam. They were donated to the Women's Library by Mrs Margaret Vaughan, great-niece of Abadam, in 2006.

The documents include:

Papers on Abadam's activities for the Feminist League (FL), including membership and financial papers, material relating to meetings, and correspondence (ABADAM/01-04).

Articles and pamphlets published by Abadam (ABADAM/05).

Papers relating to Abadam's involvement in the women's suffrage movement, including notes outlining her views and arguments in support of suffrage, letters, press cuttings, and ephemera (ABADAM/06).

Personal and family papers, including correspondence, photographs, and papers relating to Abadam's death (ABADAM/07-10).

Lecture notes for FL meetings and other speeches delivered by Abadam (ABADAM/11-12).

Research material, including a large number of loose notes and notebooks, and some correspondence, leaflets, and press cuttings (ABADAM/13-19).

Publications by others, including books, pamphlets and articles, as well as material relating to the publication of 'L'Ère de Vérité by Céline Renooz (ABADAM/20-21).

Press cuttings (ABADAM/22-25).

Sashes and badges (ABADAM/26-27).


Abbreviations:
FL - Feminist League
NUWSS - National Union of Women's Suffrage Societies
WSPU - Women's Social and Political Union
Related MaterialThe Women's Library also holds the Records of the St Joan's International Alliance (2SJA); Records of the Women's Freedom League (2WFL); and the Papers of Mildred Anna Rosalie Tuker (7MAT). There are some additional Abdam letters in the Autograph Letter Collection: 9/01/0113; 9/01/0725; 9/06/168 and 9/31/64.
For additional photographs of Abadam please see The Women's Library Museum Collection, including: TWL.2002.3 and TWL.2009.02.020
Access StatusOpen
Access ConditionsThis collection is available for research. Readers are advised to contact The Women's Library @ LSE in advance of their first visit.
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