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Help create an exhibition about women's history at Hackney Museum

Kyra Hanson

Outrage, protest and vandalism ensued when what was proposed as a museum dedicated to women's history turned into a tourist trap for Jack the Ripper fans. The East End Women's Museum has been gathering support and now it needs your help to curate an exhibition at The Hackney Museum, which will include all those brave women who have shaped the area's past.

Head along to the community forum to share your ideas about who you think should feature in the exhibition, which opens in 2018 and will commemorate 100 years since women won the vote. The museum is also looking for volunteers to dig around for women's stories in the Hackney Museum archive. So get your feminist thinking cap on and let the museum know who you'd give a shout out to. 

Here are our suggestions: 

Mary Wollstonecraft 1759-1757

We owe a lot to this eloquent lady who drafted what's seen as the first major feminist text in the English language, 'A Vindication of the Rights of Women'. Way before Blair was championing education, education, education, Wollstonecraft opened a girls school at Newington Green in the early 1780s. It was also in this area where she kicked off her literary career. 

Maria Dickin 1870-1951

An early advocate of animal welfare, Dickin went on to found the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) in 1917, which is now the UK's leading charity for vet treatment. She is commemorated with a blue plaque at 41 Cassland Road, her former home in Hackney. 

Marie Lloyd 1870-1922

A popular figure in London's dance hall scene, Lloyd made her name on the West End stage at the tender age of 15 with songs with titles such as ‘A Little of What You Fancy Does You Good’. Her songs were often an homage to the harsh realities of working class life, particularly for women. She has a blue plaque at 55 Graham Road in Dalston.

Hannah Snell 1723–1792

Snell was a brave cross-dressing woman who disguised herself as a man to become a soldier. Unfortunately, Snell was injured 11 times during a battle in India. She lived in Stoke Newington and recounted her story to Robert Walker who published her account 'The Female Soldier'. 

Olive Christian Malvery 1877-1914

This woman was a pioneering Anglo-Indian female investigative journalist associated with Hoxton Hall. She went undercover to report on the poor conditions people were living in during the nineteenth century. 

The community forum takes place at Hackney Museum, July 21 2016, 6pm-7.30pm and is free to attend 

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