lilla day monroe, kansas suffrage



Lilla Day Monroe (1858 – 1929) (left) was one of Topeka’s leading citizens during the early part of the twentieth century. Initially working as a schoolteacher, she became the first woman to practice before the Kansas Supreme Court. Lilla was a political activist who lobbied successfully for the Suffrage Amendment. She founded two journals and promoted progressive welfare, labor and property rights, minimum-wage standards, improved working conditions, child-hygiene regulations, and state primaries. Over the course of her life, she served as president of the Kansas Equal Suffrage Association, editor of “The Club Member” and “The Kansas Woman’s Journal,” and as a founding member of the Good Government Club.¬†


Lillian Mitchner (1862 – 1954) (right) was state president of the Kansas Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). On January 13, 1912, a resolution was introduced in the house providing for the submission to the people of an equal suffrage amendment to the constitution. The women worked valiantly for its passage, every legislator being asked by each member of the committee to vote for it. At all dinners, receptions and teas given for the members’ wives the subject of women’s suffrage was kept to the front. Mrs. Lillian Mitchner, president of the state WCTU, was an invaluable helper. The result was that the amendment resolution passed both houses by a large majority and was signed by Governor Stubbs on February 9, 1912.


To learn more about Lilla Day Monroe: