A Liberal-Labour Lady restores British Columbia’s first female MLA and the British Empire’s first female cabinet minister to history. An imperial settler, liberal-labour activist, and mainstream suffragist, Mary Ellen Smith (1863–1933) demanded a fair deal for “deserving” British women and men in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. She strove to shift Liberal parties leftward to benefit women and workers, while still embracing global assumptions of British racial superiority and bourgeois feminism’s privileging of white women. In the BC legislature until 1928, Smith campaigned for better wages, pensions, and greater justice, even as she endorsed anti-Asian, settler, and pro-eugenic policies. Simultaneously intrepid and flawed, Smith is revealed to be a key figure in early Canada’s compromised struggle for greater justice.