Elizabeth Goodloe Mays


Biographical Database of Black Women Suffragists

Biography of Elizabeth Goodloe Mays, 1873-1960


By Jean Bowling, Independent Historian

Elizabeth Goodloe Mays was born in 1873 to Alfred and Jane (Jennie) Mays in Indianapolis and died in that city on April 12, 1960, where she had been a lifelong resident. Elizabeth never married. Jennie had died when Elizabeth was 37, but Clara and Sayde were still living when Elizabeth died.

For 75 years Elizabeth was a member of the Bethel A.M.E. Church in Indianapolis and for many years served as President of its affiliated Endeavor Society. In January 1912, through The Endeavor Society, Elizabeth organized a Juvenile Relief Committee, which raised money to furnish daily personal necessities and food to places such as the Alpha Home for Aged, the Colored Orphans' Home, and sick children in the Indianapolis city hospital.

In June 1912 she was elected Treasurer of Branch No. 7 of the Equal Suffrage Association Indiana during a meeting held at Mrs. C.J. Walker's home in Indianapolis. Elizabeth was also active in fundraising for the Alpha Home Association in Indianapolis which maintained the institution for aged and infirm colored women.

Throughout her life Elizabeth volunteered for many leadership roles such as her role as judge for a scripture and religious literature contest where representatives of colored churches in Indianapolis competed.

In 1913 Elizabeth represented Bethel A.M.E. Church of Indianapolis at the National Christian Endeavor of the African Methodist Churches in Wilmington, N.C. and was elected Superintendent of Junior Work.

Elizabeth Goodloe Mays is buried at the Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis.


Dr. Anita Morgan, Senior Lecturer, Indiana University of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, emails

A'Lelia Bundles, Chair/President of the Foundation of the National Archives (Washington, D.C.), journalist, and author--e-mails

"News of Colored Folk," The Indianapolis Star, July 11,1909, p.25

"Children do Charity Work," The Indianapolis News, January 20,1912, p.16

"Colored Equal Suffragists," The Indianapolis News, June 25, 1912, p.12

"Scripture Contest Awaited," The Indianapolis Star, July 9, 1912, p.3

"Annual Christian Endeavor League in Annual Session," The Indianapolis News, July 17, 1913, p.7

"Miss Elizabeth Mays," The Indianapolis News, April 14, 1960, p.7

Find a Grave Index, 1600's-Current, Elizabeth Mays, 1960, https://www.findagrave.com

Federal Manuscript Census for Alfred and Jane Mayes, Indianapolis, 1880. Accessed via HeritageQuest.com.


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