Biographical Sketch of Harriet Greenleaf

 

 

Image from "In woman's realm," The Saint Paul globe. (St. Paul, Minn.), 24 April 1898.

 

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Harriet (Mrs. C. A.) Greenleaf, 1860-1924

By Susanne Caro, librarian, North Dakota State University

Member, Votes for Women League

Harriet Campbell Greenleaf was born November 20, 1860 at Manchester, Connecticut to Mr. and Mrs. James Campbell. She lived in Hartford, Connecticut until her marriage in 1887 to Charles A. Greenleaf, a junior member of W. H. Greenleaf & Son lumber dealers of Litchfield, Minnesota. They had one son, William H. Greenleaf. By 1900 their Litchfield household included 10-year-old William and a Swedish-born servant. Charles was listed as a lumber dealer.

In 1894 she founded The Woman's Literary club of Litchfield, and was the president for several years. The club had a literary focus but also included public issues. In 1899 Charles was elected mayor of Litchfield. Harriet and Charles were generally prosperous but had financial issues, defaulting on mortgages in 1892 and declaring bankruptcy in 1905.

After these economic difficulties, the family moved to Grand Forks, N.D. Harriet was very active with local clubs in Grand Forks. She joined the Franklin Club, founded in 1906, to promote the "social and intellectual lives of its members." By 1912 she was bringing the topic of equal suffrage to the club as part of their current events talks.

She was also involved with the Federation of Woman's Clubs and with The Votes for Women League of Grand Forks. As a member of the Votes for Women League, she presided over meetings and introduced speakers. She also traveled by automobile with other club members to conduct suffrage meetings and speak on the subject. When the league voted to join the General Federation of Women's clubs in 1916, Mrs. Greenleaf served as one of the delegates. She worked with press and publicity for the 1912 Convention of Women's Clubs and presented a review of a book by social work pioneer, Jane Addams, as part of a Florence Crittenton Circle event the author was to attend.

After women in North Dakota received limited suffrage in 1917, she was active with the Grand Forks liberty bond drive to encourage women and children to purchase bonds. Her work with the Franklin club continued. In the 1920 census her husband was recorded as working on his own in insurance and their 29-year old son William continued to live with his parents and worked as a university teacher. She died in July of 1924 while visiting her son in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She was buried in Manchester, Connecticut.

SOURCES:

Illustrated Album of Biography of Meeker and McLeod Counties, Minnesota. Alden, Ogle & Company. Chicago. 1888.

"Local Woman Died Friday in the East," Grand Forks Herald (Grand Forks, N.D.), October, 18, 1924, evening edition

"In woman's realm," The Saint Paul globe. (St. Paul, Minn.), 24 April 1898. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn90059523/1898-04-24/ed-1/seq-19/

The Minneapolis Journal. (Minneapolis, Minn.), 12 Nov. 1905. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045366/1905-11-12/ed-1/seq-33/

"No Public Library," The Saint Paul globe. (St. Paul, Minn.), 04 April 1899. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn90059523/1899-04-04/ed-1/seq-5/

"Mortgage Sale," The Irish standard. (Minneapolis, Minn.), 12 Nov. 1892. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn90059959/1892-11-12/ed-1/seq-2/

"Not much left," The Minneapolis journal. (Minneapolis, Minn.), 31 Aug. 1905. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045366/1905-08-31/ed-1/seq-6/

Digital Finding Aids: Franklin Club Records, University of North Dakota, Department of Special Collections. https://apps.library.und.edu/archon/?p=collections/findingaid&id=127&q=&rootcontentid=7272.

"Club notes," The Fargo forum and daily republican. (Fargo, N.D.), 23 Nov. 1912. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042224/1912-11-23/ed-1/seq-7/

Suffrage notes The Fargo forum and daily republican. (Fargo, N.D.), 07 May 1913. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042224/1913-05-07/ed-1/seq-4/

"What they are doing in society," Grand Forks daily herald. (Grand Forks, N.D.), 10 Sept. 1914. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89074405/1914-09-10/ed-1/seq-3/

Forks daily herald. (Grand Forks, N.D.), 11 Sept. 1914. Chronicling America: Historic American Grand Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89074405/1914-09-11/ed-1/seq-3/

"What they are doing in society," Grand Forks daily herald. (Grand Forks, N.D.), 30 Sept. 1914. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89074405/1914-09-30/ed-1/seq-3/

"League Elects Officers," Bismarck daily tribune. (Bismarck, N.D.), 06 May 1916. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042242/1916-05-06/ed-1/seq-5/

"Program for Convention of Woman's Clubs" The weekly times-record. (Valley City, N.D.), 17 Oct. 1912. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn89074274/1912-10-17/ed-1/seq-16/

"Local Women Plan Campaign for Liberty Bonds," Grand Forks herald. (Grand Forks, N.D.), 15 Oct. 1917. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042414/1917-10-15/ed-1/seq-10/

Grand Forks herald. (Grand Forks, N.D.), 18 Oct. 1919. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85042414/1919-10-18/ed-1/seq-6/

"Local Woman Died Friday in the East," Grand Forks Herald, (Grand Forks, N.D.) October 18, 1924, evening edition.

Federal manuscript census: Households of Charles A. Greenleaf, Litchfield, MN, 1900; Grand Forks, N.D., 1920.

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