A Guide to Women in Canadian History

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.Historic Sites
History Month
Statues and Monuments

Women are Persons! Monument (Famous Five Monument)
Ottawa, Ontario

women are persons monument
The Women are Persons! Monument. (Copyright M. Forster.)

The Women are Persons! Monument is located on the grounds of Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario. The monument was unveiled at a special event on October 18, 2000 to commemorate the Persons Case and the Famous Five women involved. Until this monument was installed on Parliment Hill, the only people honoured by statues here were dead prime ministers, monarchs and fathers of confederation. The Famous Five Foundation lobbied for about five years to have the Famous Five commemorated on the Hill.

Five Alberta women fought to have Canadian women recognized constitutionally as "persons" who were eligible to be named to the Senate. Emily Murphy led the battle and she was supported by Irene Parlby, Louise McKinney, Henrietta Muir Edwards and Nellie Mcclung. The Supreme Court of Canada rejected their case in 1928 but the Judicial Committee of the British Privy Council decided in favour of the women on October 18, 1929. These courageous ladies came to be known as the "Famous Five" and October 18 is now known as Persons Day in Canada.

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