Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890–1920
Biography of Sarah "Sadie" Blackwell Gober Temple, 1891–1956
By Nancy Alexander Simmons, Fairfax Station, VA
Woman Suffrage Activist, Social Worker, Historian
Sadie Gober was born in Georgia on March 16, 1891, to Judge George Fletcher Gober and Alice Blackwell Gober. She graduated from the Marietta, Georgia, public schools in May 1907 and from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia, in 1911, where she was Vice President of Athletics and President of a literary society.
After college, Gober volunteered in the Atlanta headquarters offices of Associated Charities; but due to her efficiency, she was soon offered a permanent position. In April 1915, she was among those appointed by Georgia's Governor as a delegate to the forty-second annual meeting of the National Conference of Charities and Corrections held in Baltimore, Maryland. And in September 1915, she was transferred to Jackson, Mississippi, to take charge of the new local office there as its General Secretary. The Jackson Daily News reported on her arrival as follows:
"The board of directors of the Associated Charities had a surprise due them at their recent meeting....For some inexplicable reason the majority of men have a picture firmly imprinted in their mind's eye of what a social service worker should be...always of a woman, of course, and of one far past the radiance of youth, with spectacles, a frown and other unpleasant addenda supposed to be necessary to the picture's completion, and incidental to a great work for humanity...the surprise of these gentlemen, and it might not be amiss to add, the distinct pleasure, was indeed great when they found awaiting them, a slender girl of pure blonde type and possessed of all the grace and charm of manner that is the birthright of the ideal girl of the old South, and endowed with the keen mentality and forceful earnestness of the real girl of the new South...."
In October 1915, the Equity League of Jackson, under the leadership its president Ella Biggs, organized for the first time a suffrage section of the parade at the opening of the state fair in Jackson. Twelve women were enlisted to participate and each would carry a placard with the name of one of the states that already allowed woman suffrage; however, only six women showed up to participate in the parade. The women wore white dresses and yellow sashes and walked with a banner that said "Women Vote in 12 States. Why Not in Mississippi?" Gober and Biggs carried the banner followed by Lily Wilkinson Thompson, Sarah Magill Watts, Avery Harrell Thompson, and Laura Divine Durfey. The women were frequently applauded along the route. In 1917, Gober was the Department Chair for Press for the Mississippi Woman Suffrage Association.
Gober continued her social work through various organizations. Some of her accomplishments were
On June 8, 1927, Gober married Mark Temple, a newspaper reporter, at her parents' home in Marietta.
Mark Temple died on July 28, 1948, and Sadie Gober Temple died on January 21, 1956. Both died in Marietta, Georgia, and are buried there in Marietta City Cemetery.
Sadie Gober 1911
Sadie Gober Temple 1935
1920 U.S. Census, Georgia. Marietta Ward 4, Cobb County, p. 2A, Enumeration District 49. Digital images. Ancestry.com
"A Juvenile Protection Association Organized." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), November 8, 1915, p. 3. Available through newspapers.com.
"Appointed Historian." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), March 22, 1930, p. 10. Available through newspapers.com.
"Associated Charities is in Need of Help." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), November 5, 1917, p. 6. Available through newspapers.com.
"Association of College Women." Jackson Daily News, March 24, 1916, p. 3. Available through newspapers.com.
"A Surprise for the Board." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), September 5, 1915, p. 9. Available through newspapers.com.
Ballots for Both: Thirteenth Annual Convention of Mississippi Woman Suffrage Association. Court House, Starkville, April 13-14, 1917. Lily Thompson Collection, Special Collections, University of Mississippi Libraries. http://clio.lib.olemiss.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/suffrage/id/121/rec/1
"Charities Conference Delegates are Named." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), April 9, 1915, p. 7. Available through newspapers.com.
"Cobb County Gives 1,153 Pints Blood." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), August 19, 1943, p. 17. Available through newspapers.com.
"Cobb County History." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), August 25, 1935, p. 30. Available through newspapers.com.
"Cobb County Women Form Roosevelt Club." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), November 25, 1931, p. 10. Available through newspapers.com.
"Cobb Democrats Organize County at Mass Meeting." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), October 10, 1928, p. 1. Available through newspapers.com.
"College Girls Would Nurse Wounded Men." Jackson Daily News, April 5, 1917, p. 8. Available through newspapers.com.
Equity League minutes 1914 – 1915, MWSA, Mississippi Woman Suffrage Association, University of Mississippi Libraries Digital Collections, Lily Thompson Collection http://clio.lib.olemiss.edu/cdm/compoundobject/collection/suffrage/id/286
Harper, Ida Husted, et al., eds. The History of Woman Suffrage. Vol. VI (1900-1920). N.p.: National American Woman Suffrage Association, 1922, p. 333. [LINK]
"School Exercises at Marietta." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), May 25, 1907, p. 7. Available through newspapers.com.
"Scores of injured GI's Land at Marietta Field." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), June 25, 1944, p. 18. Available through newspapers.com.
"Southern College Women." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), December 17, 1914, p. 4. Available through newspapers.com.
"State May Send Red Cross Unit to Front." Jackson Daily News, April 22, 1917, p. 2. Available through newspapers.com.
"State Society of red Cross to be Formed." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), April 11, 1917, p. 1. Available through newspapers.com.
"Temple." The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Georgia), January 23, 1956, p. 21. Available through newspapers.com.
"The Y.W.B.C." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), March 8, 1916, p. 3. Available through newspapers.com.
"To Visit New Orleans." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), April 9, 1916, p. 10. Available through newspapers.com.
"U.S., School Yearbooks, 1880-2012." Year: 1911 Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2010.
"Women Show Patriotism." Jackson Daily News, April 1, 1916, pp. 9-10. Available through newspapers.com.
"Young Women's Business Club Organized in City." Jackson Daily News (Jackson, Mississippi), February 23, 1916, p. 3. Available through newspapers.com.
- As chief probation officer of the newly formed Jackson branch of the Juvenile Protective Association, Gober and the organization were praised for their accomplishments in working with young boys to make them good citizens. (1915-1916)
- Gober served on the board of directors of the Young Women's Business Club in Jackson, which she helped organize. (1916)
- Gober was a charter member of the Jackson Chapter of the Southern Association of College Women. (1916)
- Gober represented Associated Charities as a delegate and spoke to the attendees at the Southern Sociological Congress that met in New Orleans, Louisiana. (1916)
- Upon her return from a month-long vacation, the Jackson Daily News reported that the city would "continue to benefit from the splendid training and remarkable personality of this young girl." It praised her for her "tireless, systematic and wonderfully efficient work" in handling a recent cyclone relief effort. (1916)
- As secretary of the newly organized Jackson chapter of the American Red Cross Chapter, Gober organized first-aid classes aimed at training and preparing women and girls to have skills they could offer to the government during the war with Germany; she held classes across the state, including one for women students at Hillman College. (1917)
- Gober met with Red Cross executives in Washington, DC, to talk about forming a State Red Cross Society and discuss sending a Mississippi Red Cross unit abroad. (1917)
- Gober travelled to New York to attend two months of training in charities work at the Russell Sage Institute, which had awarded her a scholarship based on her exemplary performance with Associated Charities. (1917)
- Gober volunteered for civilian work in France; but was disqualified for that assignment after her brother volunteered for service. She then worked for the Red Cross in Virginia; Washington, DC; New Orleans, Louisiana; Denver, Colorado; and Marietta, Georgia. (1917-1920).
- In the 1930s and 1940s, Gober Temple continued to be an activist. For example
- She served as chair of the Cobb County Woman's Democratic club in 1928 and helping form a Roosevelt-for-President Women's Club in 1931.
- The Cobb County Superior Court appointed Gober Temple the official historian for Cobb County and tasked her with writing a history of Cobb County in preparation for its 200th anniversary in 1933. While she discussed the history during the anniversary celebrations in 1933, her book, The First One Hundred Years: A Short History of Cobb County, was not published until August 1935. She later co-authored Georgia Journeys, which was published after her death. And she was elected chair of the State Library Commission (1938 & 1939).
- During World War II, Gober Temple chaired the Cobb County Chapter of the Red Cross. Where she organized blood drives prepared surgical dressings, and greeted wounded and sick soldiers at Marietta Army air field. (1944-1945)