Biographical Sketch of Eugenia Hollowell Parker

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Eugenia Hollowell (Mrs. John N.) Parker, 1859-1943

By Eve Bourbeau-Allard, MA, MSI

Director of the Equal Suffrage League of Baltimore

Eugenia Hollowell was born on November 12, 1859 at Bay Side, her family's plantation house in Pasquotank, North Carolina. Eugenia's father, Christopher Wilson Hollowell (1821-1872), a slaveholder and businessman, had the house built in 1856 for his newly wedded wife, Alpine Douglas Bodine (1830-1867), as the imposing seat of a 755-acre plantation he inherited. Eugenia's ties to North Carolina remained strong after she established herself in Baltimore, Maryland following her marriage in 1888 to John Newby Parker (1849-1931); in the early 1910s, she presided over the Women's North Carolina Society of Baltimore, hosting banquets and gatherings for the state's expatriates.

Eugenia contributed to many other social and political causes in Baltimore, especially through her membership in the Religious Society of Friends. A former member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South in Elizabeth City, N.C., Eugenia requested in 1895 to join the Society of Friends, of which her husband was already a member. From then on, she actively served the Quaker community, including as the corresponding secretary for the Committee on Home Missions and the Committee on Temperance and Suppression of Liquor Traffic in the late 1890s and early 1900s. She later represented the Baltimore Yearly Meeting on the Executive Committee of Friends on Indian Affairs.

As a suffragist, Eugenia was active at both the city and state levels. She was elected among the eight directors of the Baltimore Equal Suffrage League in 1918, and as an auditor for the Woman Suffrage League of Maryland in 1919. She attended the 1915 National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) annual convention in Washington, DC as a delegate from her home state.

Temperance was a cause particularly dear to Eugenia and John Parker's hearts: John had been a candidate for the Prohibition Party in Maryland's Second District in 1894 and Eugenia was involved in providing "scientific temperance instruction" to Baltimore inhabitants on behalf of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). Her involvement in the WCTU intersected with two other activist efforts: pacifism and suffrage. The local WCTU board assigned Eugenia to report on topics relating to peace and arbitration at their meetings, including at the 1899 convention held at the Friends' Meeting House at the corner of Eutaw and Monument streets. When Eugenia spoke on those subjects at the 1907 annual convention of the Maryland WCTU, she also had the chance to hear a talk by the president of the NAWSA, Anna Howard Shaw, herself a former WCTU activist. During the First World War, Eugenia allied with local Woman's Peace Party members in 1915 to protest a plan to provide military training to boys in Baltimore high schools.

Eugenia and John had two children, Alpine B. Parker and John H. Parker. Eugenia passed in 1943 at age 84.

Sources

"Close of the Convention - Reports on a Variety of Topics Submitted [...]," Baltimore Sun, September 28, 1899. Retrieved from ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

Guide to the Hollowell Family Papers, Manuscript Collection #578, East Carolina University. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.ecu.edu/special/ead/findingaids/0578.

Guide to the C. W. Hollowell Family Papers, PC.5028, Outer Banks History Center. Retrieved from https://axaem.archives.ncdcr.gov/findingaids/PC_5028_C__W__Hollowell_Family__.html

Harper, Ida Husted, editor. History of Woman Suffrage volume 6. [New York]: National American woman suffrage association, [1922]. Page 266.

Minutes of Baltimore Yearly Meeting of Friends. Baltimore: The John D. Lucas Printing Co., 1900-1905. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=SWMpAAAAYAAJ.

Minutes of Indiana Yearly Meeting of Friends. Richmond, Indiana: Nicholson Printing & MFG Co., 1909-1911. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=aVquBc-zEcgC.

"New Suffragist Host - National Association Arrives as Rival Delegates Depart," The Washington Post, December 13, 1915. Retrieved from ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

"Prohibition Party Meeting," The Midland Journal, October 26, 1894. Retrieved from Chronicling America. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89060136/1894-10-26/ed-1/seq-3/

Record of membership in the Baltimore Monthly of Friends - Orthodox, via the U.S. Quaker Meeting Records, 1681-1935 database on Ancestry.com.

"St. Paul Union Committees" Baltimore Sun, October 23, 1909. Retrieved from ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

"Suffrage League Elects," Baltimore Sun, June 1, 1918. Retrieved from ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

"To Hear Noted Speaker," Baltimore Sun, September 28, 1907. Retrieved from ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

"Women Protest Cadet Plan," Baltimore Sun, October 14, 1915. Retrieved from ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

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