Woman of the Century/Nettie Ransford
RANSFORD, Mrs. Nettie, general grand matron of the Order of the Eastern Star, born in Little Falls. N. Y., 6th November, 1838. Her parents were from Scotland. She was reared and educated in Little Falls. After graduating, in 1857, she went to the West and settled in Nebraska. She taught school in Omaha and Fort Calhoun. NETTIE RANSFORD. In the latter place, on 25th April, 1858, she became the wife of William P. Ransford. In 1862 they moved to Laporte, Ind., and in 1870 they made their home in Indianapolis, where they now reside. Mrs. Ransford joined the Episcopal Church in Laporte. She was one of the first women to join the Order of the Eastern Star, soon after that society was organized in 1872. She joined Queen Esther Chapter, No. 3, and entered enthusiastically into the work. In 1874 she was elected worthy matron, and was reelected in 1875 and 1876, and again in 1884, in which capacity she is still serving. She was an interested visitor at the organization of the grand chapter of Indiana, in 1874, and of the general grand chapter in 1876. She became a member of the grand chapter in 1875, was chairman of the committee on correspondence reported in 1878, and was elected grand matron in 1879 and 1880, and again in 1883. While filling that high office, she was an active officer, making numerous official visits. She was a member of the general grand chapter in Chicago, in 1878 and 1880, and in San Francisco in 1883. She was always in requisition for service in the order. She was elected most worthy general grand matron in the session of the general grand chapter, held in Indianapolis in September, 1889, and was the first general grand matron to serve under the changed constitution, making that officer the executive during the vacation of the general grand chapter. Her duties are such as an officer of so large and influential a body would naturally be called upon to perform, and cause her to travel throughout the entire general grand jurisdiction. She is now a member of the Woman's Relief Corps, serving as delegate to its various grand conventions, national and State, and in the department convention of 1890, in Boston, took a prominent part. As chairman of the reception committee in Detroit, she rendered excellent service to the corps. Of the two children born to her, one died in infancy and the other in young womanhood. Mrs. Hansford, as the highest officer in the branch of the Freemasonic fraternity devoted to the wives of the members, has distinguished herself in many ways that only members of the society can understand.