Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Rosa L. Segur, 1833 - 1906

By Sarah Kessler, undergraduate student, Michigan State University

Rosa L. Segur was a German-born American suffragist and writer. She was born on January 30, 1833, to Edward Klinge and Jeannetta Freilach Klinge in Hesse, Germany. In 1838, she moved to the United States with her parents. The family lived first in Detroit, Michigan, and settled in Toledo, Ohio, two years later in 1840.

As a child, Rosa Klinge enjoyed reading. She read everything that she could get her hands on, including history, romance, and poetry. She eventually became a teacher in the school that she went to as a student. Later, she began writing a women's column consisting of short stories for the Toledo Blade newspaper.

In 1851, two years after Rosa started writing in the Toledo Blade, she married Daniel Segur. He was supportive of her passion for writing. They had two children together, Jeannetta, who was born in 1861 and died in 1863, and Fannie who was born in 1856 and died in 1930. Segur continued to write, and she eventually began writing articles about women for "Locke's National Monthly" in 1873, including the article Mary Somerville, in addition to her stories in the Toledo Blade. Segur continued to write until she had to dedicate more time caring for her children and her husband, who was suffering from chronic illness, which unfortunately ended in his death. Daniel Segur died of suicide in 1876.

Segur is best known for being an early supporter of women's suffrage movements in Ohio and her immense involvement with public reforms. She was known to be a dedicated advocate for women's suffrage, even with all the time she put into her caring for her family. Segur was the president in the Toledo Woman's Suffrage Association, from its founding in 1869. In addition, she was an officer for the association for many years after, specifically the corresponding secretary. Segur eventually became an honorary president of the Ohio Suffrage Association.

Segur was of the several women who petitioned for the Toledo Public Library to let women be guarantors for people who wanted to apply for a library card. She also is credited for the repeal of several laws regarding women in Ohio. Segur initiated the state government to change the laws regarding the property rights of widows and married women. She also influenced the hiring of women physicians in state institutions, and police matrons in the towns of Ohio. She wrote a memoir of her activism in 1905, "A History of Woman Suffrage in the Maumee Valley." She also had a close friendship with Susan B. Anthony.

Segur carried on Daniel Segur's business interests after he died. She continued to do this until her death in 1906. Segur died in Dallas, Texas at 73 years old. She is buried at Collingwood Cemetery in Lucas County of Toledo, Ohio.

Sources:

Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 07 December 2019), memorial page for Rosa L. Klinge Segur (30 Jan 1833-26 Dec 1906), Find A Grave Memorial no. 51836389, citing Collingwood Cemetery, Toledo, Lucas County, Ohio, USA ; Maintained by Erich (contributor 47245750).

Frances Elizabeth Willard, Mary Ashton Rice Livermore, eds., A Woman of the Century (Moulton 1893): 640

"Noted Women Suffragist." The Eagle, 28 Dec. 1906, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/11287230/rosa_l_segur_dead_1906/.

"Officers Of The Toledo Woman Suffrage Association." Accessible Archives, vol. 1, no. 11, Dec. 1969,http://www.accessible.com.proxy2.cl.msu.edu/accessible/preLog?LinkType=SERIALSSOLUTIONS&ArticleID=NationalCitizenandBallotBox.BB1877020107.00007.

"Rosa L. Segur (1907)." The Yellow Jacket, 24 Jan. 1907, https://www.newspapers.com/clip/11287353/rosa_l_segur_1907/.

Segur Family Papers, Mss. Coll 19, Toledo-Lucas County Public Library.

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