Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920
Biography of Jeanette Frisbie (Mrs. Arthur) Hunter, 1881-1953
By Nadya Okamoto, teacher, Phyllis Thompson, teacher,
Harvard College, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Montclair, New Jersey, Auditor of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, and President of the Montclair Equal Suffrage League.
Mrs. Arthur J. Hunter, Sr, was born Jeanette ("Jennie") Mabel Frisbie on March 27, 1881 to DeForest Frisbie and Jennie Ida in Brooklyn, New York. 1881 or 1882. She had one sibling, a brother named James Al Frisbie. She was a leading suffragist, holding multiple leadership positions in both national organizations and local ones in Montclair, New Jersey. On April 7, 1901, she married Arthur James Hunter, Sr., from Alton, Maine. Together they raised eight children: Kenneth Roy, Arthur James, Reginald M., Harold E., Wilbur Edgar, Earl G., Milton H., and Edward R.. She died on December 7, 1953. Her husband died three years earlier on March 15, 1950.
In her career she served for multiple terms as the elected auditor for the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA), as President of the Montclair Equal Suffrage League, and as the President of the Woman's Club in Montclair. Hunter also served as the Chairman of the Finance Committee for the NAWSA, which made her an ex-officio member of the Ratification Committee. In 1916, Mrs. Arthur Hunter was elected to the executive officer position of auditor for National American Woman Suffrage Association, and continued to serve multiple terms in that role. Holding executive positions in this national organization was a highly coveted position, since the association had grown to over 225,000 members. NAWSA represented millions of women and acted as the parent organization for hundreds of local and state groups as well. They worked on both large campaigns and parades, as well as annual conventions, which Mrs. Arthur Hunter was present for. At the time when she was auditor, she served under Carrie Chapman Catt, who was president of NAWSA from 1915-1920.
In 1915, Mrs. Arthur Hunter reported to the New York Times as President of the Montclair Equal Suffrage League. This was a very prominent organization in New Jersey at the time. Just three years before, on May 3, 1912, the Montclair Equal Suffrage League participated in The Suffrage March where they held a large banner stating their organization's name (the image above). The women involved in leading this march and the organization, were also involved in organizing the first chapter of the League of Women Voters in New Jersey in 1920 after the Nineteenth Amendment was officially ratified. Although there is no confirmed attendance of Mrs. Arthur Hunter at this march, she was heavily involved in the organization at this time, and since she definitely served as president in 1915, she was a pivotal voice in leading the organization in Montclair, and NAWSA overall, during the final stages of fighting for woman suffrage . Throughout minutes and reports on national conventions and committee agendas, especially in the Montclair, New Jersey area, in the early 1900s you can be sure to find Mrs. Arthur Hunter's name (rarely as Jennie Hunter or Jennie Frisbie).
"Mountainside Hospital Announces Gifts and Donations Received." The Independent Press [Bloomfield, New Jersey] 7 Feb. 1952: 14. "Jersey Suffragists Elect Mrs. Feickert." The Daily Home News [New Brunswick, New Jersey] 13 Nov. 1916: 7.
Harper, Ida Husted, ed. "Chapter XXIX: New Jersey, Part I." In History of Woman Suffrage. Vol. 6.: New York City: National American Woman Suffrage Association, 1922. 421.
"Minutes of the Convention." Proceedings of the Annual Convention of the National-American Woman Suffrage Association October 19-25. Vol. 43-45. New York: National American Woman Suffrage Association, 1911. 135.
Blackwell, Alice Stone. The Woman Citizen: A Weekly Chronicle of Progress. Vol. 4. New York City: Woman's Journal, 1919. 267, 1183.
Shepard, Elizabeth and Royal F. Shepard. Images of America: Montclair. South Carolina: Arcadia, 2003. 30.
National American Woman Suffrage Association. Ed. Hannah J. Patterson. The Handbook. of the National American Woman Suffrage Association and Proceedings of the Forty-Eighth Annual Convention. NAWSA: Atlantic City, 1916. 212.
Keedick, Lee. National Register and Directory of Women's Clubs in America. New York, 1922. 61.
"JEWELS TO SUFFRAGE CAUSE: Silverware and Money Put in Montclair Melting Pot Also." New York Times, 1 Feb. 1915.
"FANATICS KILL CONGO MEN.: Slaughter Fifty in Efforts to Convert Natives to Religion." The New York Times, 23 Aug. 1925.
"SUFFRAGE ELECTION HELD: New Jersey Organization Reelects Its Retiring Officers." New York Tribune [New York City] 23 Jan. 1916.
"Earle Eugene Hunter." Historical Records and Family Trees. MyHeritage, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. https://www.myheritage.com/names/earle_hunter.
"Earle Hunter." Find Earle Hunter U.S. Census Records. MooseRoots, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. http://us-census.mooseroots.com/d/b/Earle-Hunter.
"Reginald Hunter." Find Reginald Hunter U.S. Census Records. MooseRoots, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. http://us-census.mooseroots.com/d/b/Reginald-Hunter.
"Jennie M. Hunter." Find Jennie M. Hunter U.S. Census Records. MooseRoots, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. http://us-census.mooseroots.com/.
"Arthur J. Hunter." Find Arthur J. Hunter U.S. Census Records. MooseRoots, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. http://us-census.mooseroots.com/.
"Arthur James Hunter, Sr. (b. October 10, 1877, d. March 15, 1950)." THE HUNTERS OF VERMONT: Information about Arthur James Hunter, Sr.. Genealogy.com, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. http://www.genealogy.com/ftm/h/u/n/Jeanette-M-Hunter/WEBSITE-0001/UHP-0027.html.
"Jennie Mabel Frisbie (b. March 27, 1881, d. December 07, 1953)." THE HUNTERS OF VERMONT:Information about Jennie Mabel Frisbie. Genealogy.com, n.d. Web. 05 Mar. 2017. http://www.genealogy.com/ftm/h/u/n/Jeanette-M-Hunter/WEBSITE-0001/UHP-0028.html.