Post written and copyright by Doris McCraw
November, in addition to Thanksgiving, is also the month when most of us have to deal with election campaigns. To say the phone calls and ads can be annoying is an understatement. However, in honor of the day I thought you might be interested in two women doctors who shared a passion across the years. I have not been able to note that they ever met, but…well read for yourself.
I have spoken of Alida C. Avery in an earlier post. Born in Sherburne, New York in 1833 she and graduated from the New England Medical College in Boston. She joined Vassar College in 1865 as a professor of Physiology & Hygiene and the resident physician. In 1874 she moved to Denver, Colorado and set up a practice there. She also became Superintendent of Hygiene for Colorado.
By 1877 Dr. Avery was actively involved with the suffrage movement. In Colorado she was president of organization. She traveled speaking on suffrage and other topics connected with her work. In 1889 she moved to California, but still an active advocate of equal rights. She passed away in San Jose, California in 1908.
Caroline E. Spencer was born in 1861 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She graduated from the Philadelphia Women’s Medical College of Pennsylvania in 1892. She moved to Colorado Springs in 1893. Her involvement in the suffrage movement, in the form of the National Womens Party, took on national recognition when she and fellow members interrupted campaigns to ask the candidates their stand on women’s equality and what they intended to do about it. She was sentenced, for picketing the White House, to seven months in jail. This did not discourage Dr. Spencer or her colleagues. Caroline Spencer continued her involvement until her death in 1928 shortly after leaving Colorado and returning to Pennsylvania.
Dr. Avery was involved in the movement in the early days but Dr. Spencer was there when the 19th amendment giving women the right to vote was passed. Dr. Spencer continued encouraging women to take part in politics and run for office. These two women have a fascinating story to tell. If you wish to know more, here are some interesting links:
Until next time, here’s to history and the stories it tells.
HOME FOR HIS HEART
also available as an ebook on Barnes & Noble and Smashwords.
Doris Gardner-McCraw/Angela Raines
Author, Speaker, Historian-specializing in
Colorado and Women’s History