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Letter ReferenceOlive Schreiner BC16/Box8/Fold4/MMPr/AssortedCorres/FredPL/9
ArchiveUniversity of Cape Town, Manuscripts & Archives, Cape Town
Epistolary TypeLetter
Letter Date After Start: 27 February 1908 ; Before End: 29 February 1908
Address FromDe Aar, Northern Cape
Address To
Who ToFrederick ('Fred') Pethick-Lawrence
Other VersionsCronwright-Schreiner 1924: 282
PermissionsPlease read before using or citing this transcription
The Project is grateful to Manuscripts and Archives, University of Cape Town, for kindly allowing us to transcribe this Olive Schreiner letter, which is part of its Manuscripts and Archives Collections. A typescript only of this letter is available. The transcription here follows this typescript and includes any uncertain dates, ellipses, mistakes and so on. Schreiner was resident in De Aar from November 1907 until she left South Africa for Britain and Europe in December 1913, but with some fairly lengthy visits elsewhere over this time. The letter has been dated by reference to content and when Kier Hardie visited Schreiner, on 25 February 1908.
1 Undated
3 We are fighting hard here. A Woman’s measure was proposed in the
4Upper House last Thursday. It would have been carried - only one of
5Merriman’ s men voted an adjournment of the debate till next Tuesday,
6 by which time Merriman will have got some of the members over no
7doubt. Cron is going to introduce the matter in the Lower House the
8week after next. As long as that unhappy Merriman is Prime Minister,
9we won’t carry it, but will make a fight. Sauer, Malan & my brother
10Will & many leading men will vote for it.
12 Thank you for your letter. Did I tell you dear Keir Hardie came to see
13us at de Aar? It was the most red-letter day in my life since you and
14your wife were at Hanover. We are going on with our little movement in
15the hum drum-way which alone is possible in a land like this. Merriman
16is our great obstruction in the way of getting the Franchise; and a
17Dutch organization called The Women’s Christian Union which is dead
18against us & very powerful amongst the Dutch women. If we can get the
19Dutch women to move, all is won. Old Hofmeyr is very much against us
20too. We are going to have a meeting tomorrow with Cron & three members
21of Parliament on the platform to speak.
23 Several of my friends who have heard your wife speak cannot speak
24highly enough of the impression she made on them. Dear, beloved woman,
25I hope her health will hold out, with your love and fellowship to
26strengthen her.
28 Who is Miss Clacton in Elizabeth Robin’s book "The Convert"?
The book referred to is: Elizabeth Robins (1907) The Convert London: Methuen & Co. The version of this letter in Cronwright-Schreiner (1924) is incorrect in various ways.