Biographical Sketch of Ruth Millard Rummel

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890–1920

Biography of Ruth Millard Rummel, 1876-1960

By Kaci Resau, Librarian, Washington & Lee University

President, Women's Club Charleston; Board Member, West Virginia Equal Suffrage Association; Chairmen of the Committee on Legislation for the West Virginia Federation of Women's Clubs; National Association, State Association Committee Member; Ratification Committee of the State of West Virginia; First Vice President then President for the West Virginia Federation of Women's Clubs

Ruth Millard was born February 25, 1876 in Pennsylvania to William Millard and Frances Hanghwout. She attended the Girls Latin School of Baltimore, before completing her college degree, an A.B. in History – Sociology- English, at the Women's College of Baltimore in Maryland. She married Henry Delbert Rummel (H.D.) in 1900 in Charleston, WV. H.D. Rummel went on to become a prominent judge and lawyer in Charleston. Ruth went on to be a pioneer in women's rights. She remained in Charleston until her death on January 23, 1960.

Ruth Millard Rummel was active in her community. She served as President for the Women's Club of Charleston from 1918-1920. She retired in 1920 since club rules dictated that members could not be elected for the same office for more than two years. The Charleston Women's Club increased membership during Rummel's tenure, and became the largest organization in the state, with over 500 members.

Rummel was heavily engaged in the State's suffrage movement. She served as a board member of the West Virginia Equal Suffrage Association in 1919. She was a member of the West Virginia Federation of Women's Clubs, which consisted of sixty-six clubs, and served as Chairman of the Committee on Legislation. In February of 1920, she and the committee penned a letter urging the West Virginia State Senate to ratify the suffrage amendment. In October of that year, she was the guest speaker at a Women's Club Meeting in Charleston where she spoke on Americanization. She also served on the National Association, State Association Committee as well as the Ratification Committee for the State of West Virginia.

In 1922, Rummel continued her work with the West Virginia State Federation of Women's Clubs as First Vice President and in 1925, she was elected President or the organization and was an active participant in the Charleston Women's Club, the Woman's Kanawha Literary, and the Charleston Branch of the American association of University Women.

In addition to her devotion to women's rights, she served on the Board of Education of the Charleston Independent School District. During her time on the board, the school district was taken to court by Anderson Brown et.al, to challenge segregation at the Public Library. She also served as an Executive member for the Charleston Art Association. In March of 1960, the West Virginia Federation of Women's Clubs held a memorial service for Ruth at the annual convention in White Sulphur Springs. Ruth died on January 23 of that year.

Sources

Brown vs. Board of Education (1928). (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.wvculture.org/history/africanamericans/brownvboard01.html

Woman's Club Meeting. (1920, October 09). The Charleston Daily Mail, p. 7. Retrieved from https://www.newspapers.com/image/8287913/?terms=Mrs. H.D. Rummel

Year: 1920; Census Place: Charleston Ward 10, Kanawha, West Virginia; Roll: T625_1958; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 105

Ancestry.com. West Virginia, Deaths Index, 1853-1973[database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2011.

Anthony, S. B., & Harper, I. H. (2017). The History of the Women's Suffrage. Musaicum Books.

Brown vs. Board of Education (1928). (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.wvculture.org/history/africanamericans/brownvboard01.html

Bulletin of The Woman's College of Baltimore(2nd ed., Vol. 1). (1907).

Club Reception for Miss Helen Denton. (1931, April 05). The Charleston Daily Mail, p. 15. Retrieved from https://www.newspapers.com/image/16465640/?terms=Mrs. H.D. Rummel

Literary Society Hears a Program. (1936, May 13). The Charleston Daily Mail, p. 8. Retrieved from https://www.newspapers.com/image/21548991/?terms=Mrs. H.D. Rummel

Stone Blackwell, A. (April 26, 1919). Organization. The Woman Citizen,3(48), 1023-1024. Retrieved May 15, 2018, from https://books.google.com/books?id=KtMRAQAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q=Rummel&f=false.

The Official Register of Women's Clubs. (1922). Croton-on-Hudson, NY: Orchard Hill Press.

Woman's Club Meeting. (1920, October 09). The Charleston Daily Mail, p. 7. Retrieved from https://www.newspapers.com/image/8287913/?terms=Mrs. H.D. Rummel

Women's Cubs Meeting at the Greenbrier. (1960, February 28). Sunday Gazette-Mail, p. 19. Retrieved from https://www.newspapers.com/image/42493021/

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