Cover image for Nellie McClung : selected writings by Canada's most famous suffragist / Barbara Smith and Nellie McClung ; foreword by Dave Obee.
Nellie McClung : selected writings by Canada's most famous suffragist / Barbara Smith and Nellie McClung ; foreword by Dave Obee.
Title Variants:
Valiant Nellie McClung
First edition.
Publication Information:
Victoria, British Columbia : Heritage House, 2016.

Physical Description:
212 pages : illustrations, portraits ; 22 cm
Added Author:


Library Branch
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
1 Bob Harkins Branch 305.42092 MCC Book Adult General Collection

On Order



Although her name today is synonymous with the women's suffrage movement in Canada, Nellie McClung's long and varied career covered several fields--from social activist to elected politician, from novelist to journalist. McClung was instrumental in Canadian women gaining the right to vote before their British and American counterparts--2016 marks the one-hundred-year anniversary of women's suffrage in Manitoba, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and British Columbia. She was also one of the Famous Five who in 1929 successfully petitioned a change in the British North America Act to include women as "persons," thereby allowing them to serve in the Senate. McClung was a household name by the time she was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Alberta in 1921, a post she held for five years.

When she settled on Vancouver Island in 1932, McClung was a highly esteemed public figure who had not only changed Canada's political landscape and influenced women's rights worldwide but had also raised five children and written a dozen best-selling books. From her beloved Island home, Lantern Lane, McClung continued to speak out against social injustice and inequality. In the late 1930s, she began to write a syndicated weekly newspaper column that served as social commentary for the years leading up to World War II. The Valiant Nellie McClung highlights a selection of those columns--covering themes as grave as war, as fundamental as the strength of the family unit, and as whimsical as the pleasure of gardening--and offers a unique reflection of our country's history and an uncanny resonance today.

Table of Contents

Nellie McClung
Forewordp. 11
Prologuep. 15
i Life at Lantern Lane
"Even in the cobwebby light, it had a certain beauty"p. 34
"They have something in this little church which causes them to walk in the light"p. 41
"Even on a sunshiny excursion it is always well to have a book"p. 47
"Christmas is a poor time to keep a good cook in jail"p. 53
"Not a soul did I know, but I knew I was on the right boat by the conversation"p. 58
"But nothing spoiled the sunshine of yesterday"p. 61
ii Foreshadows of War
"It is well to give presents that cause activity"p. 68
"And she would know what the larks were singing about"p. 71
"The times are brittle"p. 74
"Ants seem to be the only insects who keep slaves and make other insects do their bidding"p. 78
"By clothes I mean not covering, but adornment"p. 82
"We are back again in the Good Years"p. 85
"Sea and sky and green meadow, with cattle on the land, and ships on the sea"p. 89
"There is something about the sea that loosens people's tongues and draws them into a close fellowship"p. 93
"What is wrong with young Canada that it will not do anything heroic for its country's good?"p. 97
"Let the hurricane roar! The kale has no fears, with its tough fibre"p. 100
"There it stands, beautiful and tragic"p. 104
iii Writers and Writing
"Things have a dreadful permanence when people die"p. 112
"She is a radical, really"p. 116
"It is strange about poetry and how blind we are to its value and how sublimely careless we are of our poets"p. 118
"It's a good thing for us to read books written from the other side of the wall"p. 122
iv Toward Equality
"This was every woman's concern"p. 128
"So, what more do they want?"p. 131
"It is no disgrace to be 'ladylike.'"p. 134
v Second World War
"Every free nation, every nation which values freedom, will ever be indebted to these stout-hearted people"p. 142
"A boy of the farm who would have been a producer, a builder, a sower of crops"p. 146
"Who knows what this year's growth may be?"p. 149
"That cry for leaders is an old excuse. What we need today are followers"p. 151
"Canadians, I believe, are beginning to stir in their sleep"p. 155
"Is it enough to bind wounds and outfit the fighting men-if they are thereby merely enabled to fight again?"p. 159
"We have room for many more people in Canada"p. 163
"Let us look at some of our weak spots"p. 164
"The need is here, so we respond"p. 167
"God does not balance his books every Saturday night"p. 170
"We will get on faster with this business of setting our house in order when we stop reciting other people's sins"p. 174
"I am in the right mood today to talk about thanksgiving, for I have been wrapping apples"p. 178
"Mankind was not promised the easy life of a lotus eater"p. 181
"It was a typical Canadian scene, everyone doing exactly as they wished and everyone having a good time"p. 184
"Soy beans have a history"p. 186
"We must not sink into Hitler's ways of punishing innocent people just because we do not like their country"p. 187
"Like giving music lessons ma boiler factory"p. 192
Epiloguep. 196
Acknowledgementsp. 201
Booksp. 203
Bibliographyp. 204
Indexp. 209

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