The Pankhurst Family
Mother Emmeline (born July 14, 1858, died 1928) along with daughters
Christabel and Sylvia formed the Women's Social and Political Union
in 1903. The WSPU was perhaps the most militant of the
suffragist organizations advocating "Deeds not Words". Demanding that
English women be given the vote, they backed up their words by breaking
windows, chaining themselves to the homes of important men, breaking up
meetings, and refusing to be intimidated. Their actions were often met with
violent response. In one instance, Christabel was kicked down stairs and
forcibly ejected from the building because she dared ask Sir Edward Grey
what the intentions of the government were about suffrage for women (he
refused to answer). The Pankhurts were arrested and jailed many times.
When imprisoned, they would go on hunger strikes, only to be brutally
force-fed. In 1918, women over thirty who were householders or
wives of householders were given the right to vote. In 1928, three months
before Emmeline's death, English women were fully enfrachised.