Biographical Sketch of Hattie Graham Mouton

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Hattie Graham Mouton, 1868-1941

By Heather C. Plaisance, Head of Reference and Research Services, Edith Garland Dupré Library, University of Louisiana at Lafayette, Lafayette, LA

Hattie Graham Mouton was born on April 21, 1868, in Beloit, Wisconsin, to William and Mary Wallace Graham. In 1880, she attended school in Iowa and later moved to Louisiana in February 1884. On December 18, 1894, she married Joseph Rhul Mouton. For the duration of their marriage, the couple lived in Jennings, Louisiana, located in Jefferson Davis Parish. Hattie Mouton died on October 5, 1941, from injuries sustained in an automobile accident at the age of 73.

Mouton was heavily involved in a number of civic activities in the city of Jennings. In 1909, she served as the first president of the Women's Civic League, and under her direction, the League focused on city beautification. The organization planted trees throughout the city and purchased an entire block near the high school that was converted into a park for residents. In 1913, she was named director of the Civic League. She was an active member of the Jennings Women's Literary Club and often gave presentations to club members, and in 1925 was elected club president. In 1917, she served as the parish chairman of the Woman's Committee Council of Defense that supported war efforts during World War I. Mouton was a supporter of education, herself being a college graduate. In 1921, she served on the committee to investigate the conditions of Jefferson Davis parish schools. When efforts began to secure a chapter of the Red Cross in Jennings, she was appointed the chairman of the membership drive. Mouton also participated in the movement to reduce tax millages in the city.

Mouton was a member of the Louisiana Federation of Women's Clubs and held many roles within the organization. She served as a member of the sanitation and press committees and the education committee's Household Economics subcommittee. At the organization's annual meeting in 1913, Mouton was unanimously elected recording secretary. In 1914, she traveled to Detroit, Michigan, to attend the Biennial Convention of the General Federation of Women's Clubs. Her most prominent role was that of First Vice-President, and at the 1917 L.F.W.C. Convention, Mouton gave an address titled, "The Need of a State Institution for Feeble-Minded Girls."

Mouton played an integral part in the fight for women's suffrage and was a charter member of the Woman Suffrage Party in Louisiana. She served as president of the Suffrage Study Club of Jennings. In 1917, at the Woman's Christian Temperance Union Convention held in Welsh, Louisiana, Mouton led a discussion titled "Why Louisiana Women Need the Ballot." In 1921, Mouton was named the chairman of the National League of Women Voters for Jefferson Davis Parish. On a national scale, she attended the Democratic National Convention in San Francisco in 1920.

SOURCES:

"Attendance Good at Club's First Meeting of Year." Crowley Daily Signal, October 8, 1928. Newspapers.com (Website).

Bradshaw, Jim. "Chivalry Cleaned Up Jennings When Wives Raked Up Rubbish," The Daily Advertiser, January 19, 2000, p. 43. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Civic League Buys Entire Block for City Park." The Semi-Weekly Times-Democrat", April 27, 1909, p. 6. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Fourth Annual Convention, Louisiana Federation of Women's Clubs." Abbeville Meridional, October 27, 1917, p. 1. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Local Red Cross is Arranging to Become Chapter." The Jennings Daily Times-Record, August 30, 1917, p. 1. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Mrs. J. Mouton Funeral Held in Jennings." The Daily Advertiser, October 10, 1941, p. 10. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Personal and Local News." The Jennings Daily-Times Record, June 8, 1914, p. 4. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Programme for Jefferson Davis Parish W.C.T.U. Convention." The Jennings Daily-Times Record, June 6, 1917, p. 1. Newspapers.com (Website).

Shuttleworth, Frances. "What Women are Doing." The Times (Shreveport, Louisiana), November 1, 1908, p. 30. Newspapers.com (Website).

"State Convention of Louisiana Federation of Women's Clubs." The Jennings Daily Times-Record, November 12, 1919, p. 1. Newspapers.com (Website).

"Women's Clubs To Meet Here In 1914 Louisiana Federation Accepts New Orleans' Invitation." Times-Picayune, April 10, 1913, p. 7. America's Historical Newspapers: Louisiana State Package (Database).

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