Biographical Sketch of Kathleen Washburn McGraw Hendrie


Biographical Database of Militant Woman Suffragists, 1913-1920


Biography of Kathleen Washburn McGraw Hendrie, 1882-1968

By Jayne Crowther
University of Delaware

Kathleen Washburn McGraw was born February 12, 1882 in Michigan to William A. and Harriet Robinson McGraw. Her father was a successful businessman and in September, 1906, she married George Trowbridge Hendrie whose family business included Detroit railroad and banking interests. After high school she attended classes at the University of Michigan in the College of Literature, Science and the Arts in1918-1919.[1]

Hendrie's mother was a prominent member of the very political Twentieth Century Club, Woman's City Club and the League of Women Voters in Detroit. Since her mother was prominent in the voting rights movement it is not surprising that Hendrie adopted that cause as her own. Both mother and daughter were charter members of the Michigan Branch of the Congressional Union in 1915 and were present at its founding in October 1915. Hendrie continued her work with the National Woman's Party and served on its National Advisory Council. Along with Michigan women Betsey (Mrs. Paul) Reyneau and Ella (Mrs. Frederick) Aldinger, Hendrie held a banner outside the White House in April, 1917 with Woodrow Wilson's war message claiming democracy meant the governed have a right to a voice in their governance. All three women were photographed then and again on May 6, 1917 by Detroit newspapers.[2]

After the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, Hendrie continued her participation in a variety of women's organizations. She served for two years as the President of the Twentieth Century Club from 1928 to 1930. She was also the Chairperson of the Michigan Branch of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom which she continued to support through 1942. She maintained her interest in equal rights for women as the Chairperson of the Michigan Committee of the National Woman's Party focusing on equality for women in the industrial and professional worlds.[3]

Hendrie died on October 10, 1968 in Metamora, Michigan and was survived by her niece, Mrs. Patricia McGraw Ziegler of New York.[4]


1. Michigan Marriage Records 1867-1952, Michigan Department of Community Health and Vital Records Statistics, accessed by Catalogue of the University of Michigan, 1918-1919, (Ann Arbor, 1919), p. 586
Back to Text

2. Clarence Munroe Burton, William Stocking, Gordon K. Miller, The City of Detroit, Michigan, 1701-1922 (Detroit, 1922), 5:1074; Lucia Voorhees Grimes, "A History of the Suffrage Movement as Related to Michigan and Detroit," Lucia Voorhees Grimes Collection, Box 3, Folder 2, Michigan Historical Collection, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Mich.; Detroit News, April [day?], 1917, Detroit Free Press, May 6, 1917.
Back to Text

3. Detroit Free Press, April 6, 1928 and May 10, 1929, Burton Historical Collection, Reading Room File, Detroit Public Library (BHC); Afterglow, handwritten, no date, Mid-West Conference of the National Woman's Party, pp. 7-8, Reading Room File (BHC); Virginia Ruth Boynton, "Surviving Adversity" The U.S. Section of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom during World War II," Ohio State University, 1990, ftn#28 "Michigan Branch 1942 Report" to Annual Meeting of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (Master's thesis, Ohio State University, 1990), accessed on-line through Ohio LINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations.
Back to Text

4. Detroit News, October 12, 1968
Back to Text

back to top