Nellie Hall

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Nellie Hall (given name Emmeline) (born 1895 Eccles, Lancashire[1]) was a British suffragette and god-daughter of Emmeline Pankhurst, after whom she was named.

Nellie began her political activism in 1909 at the age of fourteen, when she joined the nightly protests against force-feeding outside Winson Green Prison. Nellie's involvement in the Women's Suffrage movement was influenced by her parents, particularly her mother Martha, who was one of the original six women who formed the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) in 1903.[2]

Nellie worked for the WSPU in Birmingham from 1911 to 1913 until she was arrested for throwing a brick through the window of Prime Minister Herbert Asquith's car on 21 July 1913. She was sentenced to three weeks in prison, for which she was awarded a medal by the WSPU[3] but was released after eight days, suffering from mumps. She then moved to London and continued her activism, culminating in her arrest in 1914 along with her mother and sister for concealing an arsenal of pebbles and "window smashing equipment" in their Maida Vale flat, for which she was sentenced to three months.[2]

Nellie moved back to Birmingham during the First World War, where she joined the Post Office and became the first mail sorter for the British Expeditionary Force.

In 1920 Nellie married a schoolmaster, Herbert Humpherson,[4] and settled in Warwickshire, but in 1928, through the intervention of Flora Drummond, she was persuaded to act as secretary and liaison officer for Emmeline Pankhurst, whom she nursed through her final illness. Following Emmeline's death, Nellie and her family emigrated to Canada in 1929.[5]

See also[edit]

List of suffragists and suffragettes


  1. ^ Census Returns of England and Wales, 1901. Class: RG13; Piece: 3660; Folio: 22; Page: 36.
  2. ^ a b Crawford, Elizabeth (1999). The Women's Suffrage Movement: A Reference Guide 1866-1928. Routledge. pp. 258–259. ISBN 0-415-23926-5. 
  3. ^ Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery hold a number of pieces related to Nellie Hall, including her Votes for Women sash, her hunger strike medal,leaflets, letters and other items
  4. ^ "England and Wales Civil Registrations". Kings Norton, Worcestershire 6d. Q3 1920. p. 62. Nellie Hall and Herbert S Humpherson  Check date values in: |date= (help);
  5. ^ "RG76 - IMMIGRATION, series C-1 (passenger lists)". Canada Immigration Records (1925-1935) 1: 129. 1929. Retrieved 2010-01-26.