The Independent's photo-history of the 20th century rolls on to 1907, bringing with it another evocative image from the Hulton Getty Picture Collection. Rather than rent a shop, knife-grinders, window-menders, boot- blacks and the like preferred to save what little money they earnt by plying their trades on the street. Space, therefore, was at a premium and it's thought that flower-sellers set up their pitches in the middle of the road in order to avoid prosecution for obstructing the pavement.

In the same year, the suffragettes suffered their worst clash with the establishment to date when police arrested 57 women in an attempt to stop a march on the House of Commons. Elsewhere, the threatened civil rights of Transvaal's Indian population concerned one Mohandas Gandhi. In opposing legislation which required the registration of all Indians with the authorities, the lawyer declared a campaign of civil disobedience and managed with partial success to appeal to a future adversary, Winston Churchill.

March also saw the unveiling of Picasso's Les Demoiselles d'Avignon to widespread bemusement. The open-minded observed the influence of Cezanne and primitive carvings exhibited in Paris earlier in the year, but the seemingly disproportionate and dislocated group portrait of five prostitutes baffled most.

The welfare of children continued to make the news in 1907. The British Medical Association heard from one of its members, Dr Herbert Tidswell, about the danger which chewing and smoking tobacco presented to children.

Mike Higgins

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