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Edith Cowan

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cowan in c. 1900

Edith Dircksey Cowan OBE (née Brown; 2 August 1861 – 9 June 1932) was an Australian social reformer and politician. She is best known as the first Australian woman to be a member of parliament.[1] She served in the Western Australian Legislative Assembly from 1921 to 1924. She was a member of the Nationalist Party.

Cowan's activism mostly covered the rights and welfare of women and children. She played a key role in the women's suffrage movement. In 1899, women were granted the right to vote in Western Australia.

The federal Division of Cowan and Edith Cowan University are named in honour of her. Cowan has been featured on the reverse of Australia's 50-dollar note since 1995.

Cowan was born at Glengarry station near Geraldton, Western Australia.[a] She married James Cowan in 1879. She died on 9 June 1932 in Subiaco, a suburb of Perth, Western Australia. She was 70.[3]

Notes[change | change source]

  1. Glengarry station is now located in Moonyoonooka, a rural locality on the eastern margin of Geraldton.[2]

References[change | change source]

  1. Brown, Margaret (1981). "Cowan, Edith Dircksey (1861–1932)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Australian National University. Retrieved 31 May 2021.
  2. "Municipal Inventory of Heritage Places Place Record: Glengarry" (PDF). City of Greater Geraldton. 13 December 2018. Retrieved 31 May 2021.
  3. "Mrs Cowan's death". The Daily News. Perth, Western Australia. 9 June 1932. p. 1. Retrieved 31 May 2021.