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Willard, Frances E. (Frances Elizabeth), 1839-1898



  • Existence: 1839 - 1898

Best known for her leadership (1879-1898) of the influential Woman's Christian Temperance Union, Willard also supported and often spearheaded a wide variety of social reforms, including woman suffrage, economic equality, and fair labor laws. Willard gained an international reputation through her speeches and publications. She was the first woman to be honored with a statue in the U.S Capitol building, and her Evanston home was one of the first house museums to in the country.

Biographical information about Willard is extensive. For an excellent overview of her life, see the entry “Frances E. Willard” by Carolyn DeSwarte Gifford in: Women Building Chicago, 1790-1990, A Biographical Dictionary (Indiana University Press, 2001).

See also:

Writing Out My Heart: Selections from the Journal of Frances E. Willard, 1855-1896 (University of Illinois Press, 1995), edited by Gifford.

Mary Earhart, Frances Willard: From Prayers to Politics (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1944).

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Frances E. Willard (1839-1898) Journal Transcriptions

Identifier: 55/43
Abstract The series consists of a photocopy of approximately 2000 pages of typed transcriptions of journals kept by Frances E. Willard between 1855 and 1896 (the original hand-written journal totals over 8,000 pages). Willard kept journals continuously from the age of 16 to 31, and then from age 54 to 57. The journals are an invaluable resource for understanding the life and thought of one of the most important American women of the nineteenth century.
Dates: 1855 - 1986