May Moss

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May Moss
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Alice Frances Mabel Wilson

(1869-04-27)April 27, 1869
Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
DiedJuly 18, 1948(1948-07-18) (aged 79)
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Alma materPresbyterian Ladies' College
OccupationSocial Activist, Suffragette
Isidore Henry Moss(m. 1887)

Alice "May" Moss, CBE (27 April 1869 – 18 July 1948) was an Australian welfare worker and women's rights activist.


She was born as Alice Frances Mabel Wilson in Ballarat and was educated at the Presbyterian Ladies' College in East Melbourne. [1] She married grazier Isidore Henry Moss in March 1887 and they had two daughters.

Presbyterian Ladies College, Melbourne school for girls in Melbourne, Australia

Presbyterian Ladies' College, Melbourne (PLC), is an independent, private, Presbyterian, day and boarding school for girls, located in Burwood, an eastern suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

While her children were young, Moss began to campaign for the rights of women and served as vice-president of the Australian Women's National League in 1906–14, during that time she actively campaigned in Victoria for women's suffrage. She was a member of the National Council of Women of Victoria from its formation in 1904. In 1914 she relinquished her position as vice-president of the Australian Women's National League at the onset of World War I in order to become the (then) only female member of the Victorian recruiting committee for the Armed Services. [2]

Womens suffrage the legal right of women to vote

Women's suffrage is the right of women to vote in elections. Beginning in the late 1800s, women worked for broad-based economic and political equality and for social reforms, and sought to change voting laws in order to allow them to vote. National and international organizations formed to coordinate efforts to gain voting rights, especially the International Woman Suffrage Alliance, and also worked for equal civil rights for women.

The Australian Women's National League (AWNL) was an Australian political lobby group federation first established in 1904. It acted in many ways like a political party, with an extensive branch network and the capability to run its own candidates. It was a conservative organisation with four key declared objectives:

World War I 1914–1918 global war originating in Europe

World War I, also known as the First World War or the Great War, was a global war originating in Europe that lasted from 28 July 1914 to 11 November 1918. Contemporaneously described as "the war to end all wars", it led to the mobilisation of more than 70 million military personnel, including 60 million Europeans, making it one of the largest wars in history. It is also one of the deadliest conflicts in history, with an estimated nine million combatants and seven million civilian deaths as a direct result of the war, while resulting genocides and the 1918 influenza pandemic caused another 50 to 100 million deaths worldwide.

She was an Australian delegate at the League of Nations Assembly at Geneva in 1927, where she was the first woman to sit on a finance committee. She attended the International Council of Women in Geneva in the same year and in 1928 was elected as vice president of the ICW, a position she held until her death.

She was the first president of the National Council of Women of Australia, serving from 1931 to 1936. She was involved in organising the centenary of Melbourne celebrations, she was on the executive of the Victorian and Melbourne Centenary Celebrations Council and chaired the Women's Centenary Council. She was the first female non-professional member of the National Health and Medical Research Council.

Melbourne City in Victoria, Australia

Melbourne is the capital and most populous city of the Australian state of Victoria, and the second most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Its name refers to an urban agglomeration of 9,992.5 km2 (3,858.1 sq mi), comprising a metropolitan area with 31 municipalities, and is also the common name for its city centre. The city occupies much of the coastline of Port Phillip bay and spreads into the hinterlands towards the Dandenong and Macedon ranges, Mornington Peninsula and Yarra Valley. It has a population of approximately 5 million, and its inhabitants are referred to as "Melburnians".

National Health and Medical Research Council

The National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) is Australia's peak funding body for medical research, with a budget of roughly $900 million a year. The Council was established to develop and maintain health standards and is responsible for implementing the National Health and Medical Research Council Act 1992.

Moss died on 18 July 1948, in a private hospital in Melbourne. [3]

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  1. "SOCIAL WORKER DEAD". Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 - 1995). 1948-07-19. p. 2. Retrieved 2018-11-29.
  2. "Moss, Alice Frances Mabel (May)". The Australian Women's Register. National Foundation for Australian Women and The University of Melbourne. Retrieved 16 April 2019.
  3. "DEATH OF MRS I. H. MOSS". Argus (Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 - 1957). 1948-07-19. p. 5. Retrieved 2018-11-29.