Biographical Sketch of Georgia B. Smith

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Georgia B. Smith, 1871-1964

By Madeline Miller, student: Saint Martin's University, Lacey, WA

Georgia Ann Brockman was born in April of 1871 in California to George and Margaret Brockman. Her family later moved to Spokane, Washington the first census record places her there in 1880. Georgia married her first husband Albert C. Behne on June 21st, 1894 in Spokane. They had two children; Albert Erol Behne who was born in 1895 and Harris Brockman Behne who was born in 1897. Georgia and Albert divorced sometime between 1897 and 1905 but it's unclear when her divorce was finalized. Albert was cited in the 1920 Census as living in Idaho in 1920 so we know she wasn't widowed.

Georgia Ann Brockman Behne became Georgia B. Smith on May 20, 1905 when she married Dr. George Belding Smith. George and Georgia were married for less than eight years before he passed away on January 18, 1913. They lived in Anacortes, Washington. They had one child, Helen Isabella Smith who was born in 1907 in Spokane, Washington. A later census record places her in Seattle in 1930 as a widow. She passed away on June 9, 1949 at the age of 78 in Seattle, Washington.

It can be inferred that she was a teacher while she was in Anacortes based on her participation in a teachers' picnic in 1911 on Guemes Island.

She contributed to the Washington Women's Cookbook which was published in 1908. The cookbook was used as a fundraiser for the Votes for Women Suffragist Campaign. Her tomato broth recipe is featured on page 10.

 

Teacher's only picnic on Guemes Island, 1911. Photo obtained from the Anacaortes Museum and Maritime Heritage Center.

She supported Emma Smith De Voe and was mentioned in her letters that are kept in her personal scrapbook, but not much else is known about her suffrage work. She is cited as being a suffragist that helped the suffrage movement in Washington in both books The Complete History of the Suffragette Movement and the History of Woman Suffrage: 1900-1920. However, she is only mentioned in both books as being part of the effort, titled as a trustee.

In a series of letters that were saved by Emma Smith DeVoe from Georgia, it can be inferred that their relationship was very close. Georgia often refers to her lovingly as a dear friend and they discuss different suffragist activities (featured below, April 7, 1909). In a letter to Emma Smith Devoe from 1910 she discusses voting and how election day played out. 320 women had been registered to vote and 280 turned out to vote (featured below, December 8, 1910). She mentions meetings and important figures that will be in the area as well as leadership roles they played. Georgia often housed visiting suffragists as well.

Sources:

1910 United States Federal Census Year: 1910; Census Place: Anacortes Ward 3, Skagit, Washington; Roll: T624_1668; Page: 10B; Enumeration District: 0264; FHL microfilm: 1375681

Washington, Marriage Records, 1854-2013 Washington State Archives; Olympia, Washington; Reference Number: easpmra1348

1920 United States Federal Census Year: 1920; Census Place: Yellow Pine, Valley, Idaho; Roll: T625_294; Page: 2A; Enumeration District: 180; Image: 634

U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995

Harper, Ida Husted, et al., eds., History of Woman Suffrage. 1900-1920. Vol. 6. [LINK]

Devoe, Emma Smith. Washington Women's Cookbook. Michigan State University Library, digital.lib.msu.edu/projects/cookbooks/books/washingtonwomens/wash.pdf

"Photo Record." Anacortes Museum and Maritime Heritage Center, anacortes.pastperfectonline.com/photo/14C58357-0153-47B6-8E6F-499656105340.

Georgia Smith, "Letter from Georgia Smith to Emma Smith DeVoe, 6/18/1909, page 1," PRIMARILY WASHINGTON, http://primarilywashington.org/items/show/41243.

Georgia Smith, "Letter from Georgia Smith to Emma Smith DeVoe, 7/27/1908, page 1," PRIMARILY WASHINGTON, http://primarilywashington.org/items/show/41240.

Georgia Smith, "Letter from Georgia Smith to Ellen Leckenby, 3/17/1909, page 1," PRIMARILY WASHINGTON, http://primarilywashington.org/items/show/41241.

"Page 048," PRIMARILY WASHINGTON, http://primarilywashington.org/items/show/25657.

Georgia Smith, "Letter from Georgia Smith to Emma Smith DeVoe, 12/8/1910, page 1," PRIMARILY WASHINGTON, http://primarilywashington.org/items/show/41244.

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