Woman of the Century/Mary L. Doe

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DOE, Mrs. Mary L., woman suffragist, temperance reformer and business woman, born in Conneaut, Ohio, 27th July, 1836 She is of Puritan ancestry of Scotch-Irish blood, who came over the MARY L. DOE.jpgMARY L. DOE. seas in the third ship after the Mayflower. Her maiden name was Thompson. Her immediate ancestors, the Thompsons and Harpers, emigrated from Vermont and settled in that portion of Ohio known as the Western Reserve. The men of her family have been brave and patriotic, taking part in all the country's wars The women, left at home, in addition to their family cares often took up the business that their war-going husbands laid down. It is not strange, therefore, that Mrs. Doe should be a self-reliant business woman, strong in her disbelief of the "clinging-vine" theory. Mrs Doe's early instruction was received from a private tutor and in select schools. At nine years of age she was sent to the Conneaut Academy, then just completed. At fifteen she began to teach a country school for one dollar a week and "boarded around." Later she attended the State Normal School in Edinboro, Pa. When she was eight years old, she attended a temperance meeting addressed by one of the original Washingtonians, and she then and there signed the pledge. In 1853 she joined the Good Templars, which was then a new organization and one of the first to embody the principles of equal rights for women and the prohibition of the liquor traffic by the State. In 1878 she became a member of the Michigan Grand Lodge of Good Templars, and she has attended every session since. She has held the office of grand vice-templar for two years and of grand assistant secretary for nine years. She has further shown her interest in temperance by joining the Woman's Christian Temperance Union and the various other temperance organizations in the towns where she has lived. In 1877 Mrs. Doe went to Saginaw, Mich., led there by her husband's business interests. There she at once made friends with the advocates of equal suffrage, a movement that has always been dear to her heart. In 1884, in a meeting called in Flint by equal suffragists of national prominence to organize a State suffrage association, Mrs. Doe was chosen president of the association That office she held for six years. She has been active in securing many of the privileges granted to women by the legislature of Michigan, and has spent much of her time with other equal suffragists in the State capital. She is at present chairman of the legislative committee, and also a member of the advisory committee of the Michigan Equal Suffrage Association. Mrs. Doe changed her residence from Saginaw to Bay City in 1886, and opened a store for fancy goods. That business she still continues. In bay City she is a member of the board of education, doing important committee work in connection with that body. Most of her church work has been done in the Methodist Church. Her father was a preacher of that denomination.