Biographical Sketch of Kelluak Wright

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Kelluak (Mrs. H.D.) Wright, 1864-1936

By Thomas Dublin, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, SUNY Binghamton

Kelluak (also known as Tallua, T. Alice and Alice T.) Wright (maiden name uncertain) was born in Georgia in 1864. In 1890 she married Hamlet D. Wright, a Canadian born in 1862, who had immigrated to the United States in 1870. A Seattle newspaper account in October 1900 chronicled the arrival in port of a Yukon River steamer carrying 162 passengers and $150,000 in Gold from Alaska. H.D. Wright was identified as one of three passengers bringing the largest consignments of Gold. A 1905 account describe Kelluah Wright as "the wife of a fortune hunter who 'struck it rich' in the Klondike.'" The couple had no children in 1910 but did employ a live-in Irish servant. Their large home stood near the corner of Judkins and 31st St. and apparently had a great view of Mt. Baker in the distance. Given Hamlet's occupation as a gold miner, they were probably often lived apart; in 1915 the Kelluak was living on her own at the Outlook Hotel.

1910 marked the year of the successful statewide referendum on woman suffrage. Mrs. H. D. Wright was recorded as serving on the suffrage campaign's Finance Committee that year. A brief newspaper account in April 1916 noted Mrs. Wright's attendance at a children's performance of "Jack and Jill" at the Methodist Church. That is the extent of digitized newspaper references to Mrs. Wright.

Seattle city directory entries listed Hamlet Wright in the city between 1902 and 1935 and in 1918 and 1935 his wife is noted as T. Alice, who might well have been Tallua Alice Wright. The 1930 census garbled the couple's names, but Helmet D. and Alice T Wright are no doubt this couple. Hamlet continued to work as a gold miner. Their home, listed in Alice T.'s name, was valued at $4,000. Both were recorded as 65 years old at this date.

T. Alice passed away in Seattle in August 1936 at 72, survived by her husband, now recorded as Harry D. Wright.

Sources:

Federal manuscript census, Seattle, 1910, Hamlet Wright household and 1930, Helmet D. and Alice T. Wright household. City directories for Hamlet Wright, Seattle, 1902-1935. Both accessed via HeritageQuest.com.

Death record for T. Alice Wright, August 1936. Accessed online at Ancestry Library Edition.

"Northland Crowd," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Oct. 20, 1900, p. 9.

"Caterpillar Crusade Results in War," Seattle Star, June 7, 1905, p. 1.

"Well Given," Westford Wardsman, April 15, 1916. Transcription accessible at https://museum.westford.org/historic-article/the-westford-wardsman-saturday-april-15-1916/

Paul Dorpat, "Regrade on the Ridge," Pacific NW Magazine, originally published Sept. 16, 2007. Accessed online at https://www.seattletimes.com/pacific-nw-magazine/regrade-on-the-ridge/

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