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Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Western Australia (1892 - )

From
1892
Occupations
Religious organisation, Lobby group and Welfare organisation
Alternative Names
  • WCTU of Western Australia
Location
Suite 17 Lincoln House, 4 Ventnor Avenue West Perth WA 6005 Ph: (08) 9322 1648 fx: (08) 9342 3908 e-mail: adamswctu@smartchat.net.au

Summary

The Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) of Western Australia was founded in 1892, inspired by the visit of Jessie Ackerman, the second world missionary of the American Union. The group is primarily dedicated to promoting total abstinence from alcohol and other harmful drugs and all members sign a pledge to this effect. Under its broader agenda of 'home protection' and the promotion of a healthy lifestyle, however, it has been involved in wide range of social and political reform activities mostly relating to the welfare of women and children. Importantly, influenced by its sister organisation in the United States, the WCTU became a major supporter of the campaign for women's suffrage in Australia as it was believed that power at the ballot box was the only way to achieve their goals. While at its most influential in the years up to WWI, the movement still continues today.

Details

The first local Union In Wetsern Australia was formed in York, with another five soon following, and by August 1891 a Colonial Union with 155 members had been established.

As well as campaigning for restrictions on the sale of alcohol, early activities of the groups revolved around prison work, establishing a sailor's rest as well as children's and youth groups. By at least 1893 the Union also adopted the cause of women's suffrage. The Union continued to expand its activities - creating refuge homes, capainging against gambling, smoking and other drugs, and producing education literature.

Sources used to compile this entry: Henderson, Joyce R., The strength of white ribbon : a year-by-year record of the centennial history of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Western Australia (Inc.) : ten decades of service for "God, home ahd humanity" 1892-1992, W.C.T.U., West Perth, c1992, 140 pp.

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Archival resources

JS Battye Library of West Australian History, State Library of Western Australia

  • Interview with Nola Adams] [sound recording] / [interviewed by Laura Bryant], OH2709/12 A/r; JS Battye Library of West Australian History, State Library of Western Australia. Details
  • Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Western Australia, Minute books [manuscript], 1935 - 1937, ACC 4853A; Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Western Australia (1892 - ); JS Battye Library of West Australian History, State Library of Western Australia. Details
  • Women's Service Guilds of Western Australia Records, 1896 - 1959, ACC 1949A; Women's Service Guilds of Western Australia (1909 - 1997); JS Battye Library of West Australian History, State Library of Western Australia. Details

Jane Carey

Site-wide information and acknowledgements

National Foundation for Australian Women The University of Melbourne, eScholarship Research Centre

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