British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa
British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa
Women's Emigration
The Hon. Mrs. Ellen Joyce was the head of the British Women’s Emigration Association (BWEA) from 1901 until 1919. The aim of the BWEA was to encourage middle class women to emigrate to the colonies because of a perceived surplus of women in England and Wales while there was a dearth of British women in the colonies, particulary in Canada and Australia. The database below lists 587 of the women assisted by the BWEA. (The database about the 1906 Emigration contains 99 names.)
 
The 1901 Census revealed that there were a million more women than men in England and Wales. Mrs. Joyce was married to a Church of England clergyman, the Reverend James Gerald Joyce, and they resided at St. John’s Croft, Winchester, Hampshire, England. Most of her work appears to have been carried out from this house as the address shows frequently in her correspondence.

The young women ranged in age from 14 to mid-40s, and the majority went to Ontario or Western Canada. Most were single, but a few of the older women were widows. All were said to be of good character. The safety of the women during and after their travel was uppermost in the BWEA's thinking and contact was maintained after their arrival to assist in integration into Canadian society, this was particularly true of the women coming through the Girls Friendly Society where Anglican congregations were the welcoming link.

The BWEA encouraged and assisted educated young women to emigrate to Canada to take up positions as governesses, and particularly domestic workers. Mrs. Joyce was a strong imperialist and felt it vital to spread British culture and maintain the colonies as part of the British Empire.
 
Mrs. Joyce was also anti-suffrage and anti-feminist and in her speeches said: "There is no bigger attitude or higher aspiration than to be one of the Daughters of a Christian Empire. The GFS [Girls Friendly Society] has done the very best Imperial work that has been done, in sending women who have been under the highest influences from cultured, refined, religious women, to become the mothers of a race, not dwarfed by poverty; or cramped by pressure as in the Nest and Nursery of the Mother-Land; but free, contented, God-fearing women in the Great Garden of the British Empire. Let us enthuse ourselves and then enthuse others with the idea that the Empire and not the island is women’s sphere . .  . Empire building ought not to be left to accident. It is the finest, most interesting, the most satisfactory bit of work an Englishwoman can lay her hands to do."
 
The Times (London, England) of Friday, May 23rd. 1924 published the following under Deaths:
JOYCE – On the 21st. May, at St. John’s Croft, Winchester, Ellen, widow of Rev. James Gerald Joyce, daughter of Francis William Rice, 5th Baron Dynevor, aged 92. Service Winchester Cathedral, 12.15pm. Interment Stratfieldsaye, to-morrow (Saturday) 3p.m. (nearest station, Mortimer).

There is a memorial to Mrs. Joyce in Winchester Cathedral that reads as follows:
To the revered memory of the Hon Ellen Joyce OBE
Lady of Grace of St. John of Jerusalem
Wife of the Rev Gerald Joyce
Born Jan 12 1832 Died May 21 1924
In gratitude for her devoted work
On behalf of the women and girls
Of the Empire and as a pioneer
Of protected emigration
 
Any records in England that contained information on individual women were destroyed in 1964, therefore the records held by Library and Archives Canada have added significance for any persons researching women’s immigration to Canada.
 
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Records: 1 to 50 of 587

Name   Age Destination Ship SS Date
Abbott, E. 36 Vancouver, British Columbia Canada 18 July, 1904
Abell, Ethel 20 Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada 14 July, 1904
Absalom, Catherine 25 Maple Creek Canada 1 July, 1903
Adams, E. 30 Maple Creek Canada 18 July, 1904
Addis, Elsie 15 Sintaluta, Saskatchewan Southwark 16 September, 1903
Addy, Dorothy 20 Vancouver, British Columbia Canada 27 October, 1904
Addy, Mary 25 Vancouver, British Columbia Canada 27 October, 1904
Alexander, Mary 24 Montreal, Quebec Canada 14 July, 1904
Aley, Annie 25 Toronto, Ontario Canada 5 August, 1903
Alford, Mary 26 Toronto, Ontario Canada 11 May, 1905
Allan, Mary 22 Montreal, Quebec Canada 6 April, 1905
Allen, Enid 26 Qu'Appelle Canada 5 May, 1904
Allen, Eva 15 Petrolia Canada 27 October, 1904
Allum, Muriel 17 Montreal, Quebec Canada 27 October, 1904
Anderson, Gertrude 21 Port Hope, Ontario Canada 27 October, 1904
Anderson, Isabella 15 Montreal, Quebec Canada 6 April, 1905
Anderson, Sarah 20 Montreal, Quebec Canada 6 April, 1905
Andrews, Ada 25 Montreal, Quebec Canada 24 November, 1904
Anthony, Caroline 36 Vancouver, British Columbia Canada 27 October, 1904
Archer, Ethel 23 Toronto, Ontario Canada 2 March, 1904
Archer, Leonora 18 Toronto, Ontario Canada 2 March, 1904
Arcus, Janet 31 Souris Canada 1 July, 1903
Arnold, Elizabeth 31 Vancouver, British Columbia Southwark 16 September, 1903
Arrowsmith, Florence Toronto, Ontario Canada 9 June, 1904
Avey, Emily 29 Montreal, Quebec Canada 15 June, 1905
Ayres, Clara 24 Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario Canada 5 August, 1903
Ayres, Elizabeth 24 Barrie, Ontario Canada 11 May, 1905
Ayres, Lucy 20 St. Catherines, Ontario Canada 9 June, 1904
Babington, Harriet 41 Carberry Canada 2 March, 1904
Bailey, Kate 30 Montreal, Quebec Canada 22 September, 1904
Bain, Jessie 25 Kingston, Ontario Canada 5 May, 1904
Baker, Kate 30 Kingston, Ontario Canada 5 May, 1904
Baldock, Sarah 19 Toronto, Ontario Canada 22 September, 1904
Banham, Ada 19 Toronto, Ontario Canada 15 June, 1905
Banham, Maria 20 Toronto, Ontario Canada 15 June, 1905
Banning, Jane 33 Montreal, Quebec Canada 21 January, 1904
Barclay, E. 21 Kingston, Ontario Canada 18 July, 1904
Barnes, Ada 25 Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada 1 July, 1903
Barnes, Louisa 25 Coburg, Onatrio Canada 1 July, 1903
Barrell, Florence 19 Petrolia Canada 9 June, 1904
Barrett, Harriet 31 Toronto, Ontario Canada 5 May, 1904
Barrett, Lily 19 Grand View, Manitoba Canada 5 May, 1904
Batchellor, Elizabeth 33 Regina, Saskatchewan Canada 5 May, 1904
Bates*, Ellen 27 Carmen Canada 11 May, 1905
Baynham, Ada 46 Dunnville Canada 27 October, 1904
Beamish, Jane 26 Maple Creek Canada 9 June, 1904
Beattie, Jane 23 Toronto, Ontario Canada 9 June, 1904
Beddard, Mary 46 Copper Cliff Canada 27 October, 1904
Bell, Martha 22 Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada 5 August, 1903
Bell, Mary Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada 5 August, 1903
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