Erasmus and Lucy Correll
Workers for Woman's Suffrage
Erasmus Correll was born in Canada in 1846. As a child
he lived in Illinois and in California. He studied civil engineering
and surveying at Eureka College in Illinois and, in 1869, moved
to Thayer County to work as a surveyor. He married Lucy L.
Wilder in 1868. In 1871 he started a local paper, the Hebron
Journal, and in 1882, he began publication of the Western
Woman's Journal, a newspaper that enjoyed a national pro-women's
suffrage readership. He and Lucy campaigned tirelessly for suffrage
and he served as president of the American Woman Suffrage Association.
He died in 1895 and Lucy died in 1924.
Autograph books mark a significant occasion by recording the signatures and sentiments of
the people present. The two autograph books in the Correll papers
at the Nebraska State Historical Society commemorate two momentous
events in the fight for woman suffrage in Nebraska.
Erasmus Correll's autograph album was compiled on the occasion of the Feb. 3, 1881, vote in the
Nebraska Legislature to place woman suffrage on the ballot that
November. The bill passed but the amendment fell in November
at the hands of Nebraska's all-male voters. He notes the purpose
of his album on the inside front cover.
"House Roll No 162, Joint Resolution
providing for the submission to the electors of this state of
an amendment to section 1, article VII of the constitution."
was introduced by the undersigned in the House of Representatives
of the Legislature of Nebraska, Feb. 3, 1881. It passed the House
Feb. 21, 1881, the Senate, Feb. 25, 1881, and received the signature
of the Governor Feb. 26, 1881. The amendment is to be voted on
by the electors of the state Nov 7, 1882.
The following signatures are the autographs
of the members of the House and Senate who voted for the bill.
Lincoln, Neb., Erasmus
May 20th, 1882 Rep.
from Thayer County
The Women of America are equal in intellect & morals, identically
with men & should have the elective franchise extended to
Geo. W. Brown, Dayton Boone Co. Neb.
4th Dist Extra Session
Commending your stand for liberty
Yours Robert B. Daley Red Willow Co.
Yours for equal rights and fair play.
1st Dist. Extra session
The autographs in Lucy Correll's
album are all dated September 14, 1882.
The American Woman Suffrage Association held its annual convention
in Omaha at that time and undoubtedly Lucy's album was signed
by delegates to this meeting. These inscriptions almost always
included some slogan or wish for success in achieving woman suffrage.
Yours for the cause of woman
M.E. Hastic Sept 14, 1882, Summerset Iowa
The love of your co-worker for justice
Belle G. Bigelow Omaha September 14th 1882
Yours for a peoples' government
Mrs. J. Be Fenn
Nevada Story Co. Iowa
The most notable autograph in the book may have been added later in the month. Susan
B. Anthony, while not mentioned in the local newspapers as
attending the September 14 convention, was scheduled to speak
at the convention of the National Woman Suffrage Association
held in Omaha later in the month. Her signature in Lucy's book
was, perhaps, acquired then.
Diaries and Journals
J.A. Hill, Civil
W. Richards, Surveyor
J.S. Morton, Statesman
Sara J. Price, Teacher
W. Danley, Businessman
J. & E. Green, Farmers
S. Buck, Farm Wife
S. & E. Allis,
& L. Correll, Suffragists
W.J. Bryan, Orator
Lucy Drexel, Student
Viola Barnes, Student
Willa Cather, Author
C. Calvert, Educator
Myrtle Soulier, Student
B. Watson, Porter
Margaret and Edward
Frances M. Creech,
Sierra Nevada Bunnell,