Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890–1920
Biography of Caroline McCullough Everhard, 1843-1902
By Beth A. Page, researcher
President, Ohio Suffrage Association
Caroline Mae McCullough was born September 14, 1843, in Massillon, Ohio to Thomas and Nancy Melendy McCullough. Her father acquired wealth in Massillon as a farmer and banker. At the age of 22, Caroline McCullough married Henry H. Everhard in St. Timothy's Church on November 7, 1865. Henry, the son of a large landholder, later prospered as a stone quarry operator. Caroline and Henry had three children: Ethel Schmettau of Toledo, Marian E. Johns (later Wilkin) of New York and Belgium, and Melville of Massillon. Caroline Everhard died April 14, 1902, at home after tumor surgery.
Everhard believed women should have a say in financial and local matters. She became the first female serving on a bank board of directors in Ohio at the Union Bank in Massillon. She also helped found the town's library, cemetery association, and humane society. Everhard attended the Ohio Council of Women Convention in 1888 with Susan B. Anthony, where Everhard acted as corresponding secretary. A reporter wrote, "Mrs. Everhard is one of the most advanced thinkers on the subject of woman's rights in Ohio. She has the courage of her convictions, and her influence will be felt in woman's movements." Her writing in literary journals, social ties to Ohio lawmakers, including Governor William McKinley, and persuasive arguments for suffrage, led to Everhard serving as the first president of Massillon Equal Rights Society in 1889. Everhard wrote in her journal in 1890, "O! If I could inspire every member of my sex with the same feeling, we would no longer be an unrepresented class and therefore an enslaved class."
Elected President of the Ohio Woman's Suffrage Association in 1890, Everhard sought to gain votes for women in local elections with respect to school boards. The organization introduced a bill in 1892 to allow women to vote in school elections and serve on the board. Despite several losses, the bill passed on April 10, 1894. Everhard cast her first vote on March 7, 1896, and wrote, "I considered it a very important event, and was just as excited as though my future depended upon the result!" During the same year, she spoke with other activists in front of the House judiciary committee in Washington D.C. She continued as president of the Association until 1898.
"70 Years Ago." Massillon Evening Independent, Massillon, Ohio. 30 October 1935, p.4.
Caroline Mae Everhard, obituary. Massillon Independent. 17 April 1902. https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/94152588/caroline-mae-everhard.
Everhard, Caroline McCullough. Journal and Scrapbook, ca. January 1890-September 1901. Caroline McCullough Everhard Papers. Massillon Museum. Accessed 10 February 2018. https://www.flickr.com/photos/massmuarchives/sets/72157658124338506.
"Fifth Annual Convention." Ohio Woman Suffrage Association, Akron, Ohio, 1889.
Harper, Ida Husted, ed. "Ohio." Chapter LVIII in History of Woman Suffrage, vol. 4: 1883-1900. New York: National American Woman Suffrage Association, 1902, pp. 881-85 [LINK].
Kane, Ruth. "Massillon—It All Began with Kendal." Massillon Evening Independent. 4 September 1976, pp. 30-31, 46, 55.
Nagel, Marie N. "The Week in Society." Lima News, Lima, Ohio. 4 November 1916, p.6.
"Ohio, Births, and Christening Index." Accessed 10 September 2017. Ancestry.com.
"Ohio Marriage Records," application no. 98593, Jan. 16, 1915. Ancestry.com.
"Suffragists Name Committee Heads." Akron Evening Times. Akron, Ohio. 1 March 1919, p.3.
U.S. Census Records, 1880-1940.
Wilson, Mary Proctor. "Ohio Federation of Women's Clubs." Marion Star, Marion, Ohio. 30 November 1918, p.2.