Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920
Biography of Julia Matilda Gutke Brixen, 1859-1948
By Dr. Kathryn Mackay, Professor of History and Public History Program Director, Weber State University, Ogden, Utah.
Board member, Young Women's Mutual Improvement Association.
Julia Matilda Gutke Brixen was born in Rodanefors, Sweden. In 1874, she emigrated with her parents to Utah as converts to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. In 1880, she married Andrew C. Brixen (1858-1900).
It was Julia's membership on the board of the Young Women's Mutual Improvement Association which involved her in woman suffrage. The Y.W.M.I.A. was one of three women's organizations within the LDS church - the others were the Relief Society and the Primary. After the National Council of Women was organized in 1888 by leaders of the National Woman Suffrage Association, many women's organizations across the country were invited to join. The three LDS women's organizations did so. Between 1911 and 1917 she served on the women's legislative committee of the Young Ladies' Mutual Improvement Society of the LDS Church.
In describing the work Julia did as a member of the board, Susa Young Gates exclaimed: "she has done yeoman service in traveling all over the West." That work was both ecclesiastical and political.
Gates, Susa Young Gates. "Julia M Brixen." History of the Ladies' Mutual Improvement Association of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, from November 1869 to June 1910. Salt Lake City: Deseret News, 1911, 216-219.
Jensen, Andrew. LDS Biographical Encyclopedia: A Compilation of Biographical Sketches of Prominent Men and Women in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Salt Lake City, UT, USA: Andrew Jenson History Co., 1901.