Biographical Sketch of Ann M. (Mrs. William K.) Lancey

Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Ann M. (Mrs. William K.) Lancey, 1819-1910

By Jodi Oaks, Librarian, Mohawk Valley Community College

Ann Marie Gould was one of 13 children of Joshua and Sally (Martin) Gould born on May 1, 1819 in Norridgewock, Maine. Her father was a lawyer and her family was prominent in the area. At 13 years old, Ann began teaching at a school on a local farm and continued to teach for the next 20 years. On January 20, 1856, Ann married William K. Lancey, "an extensive dealer in lands and lumber" born February 1821 in Maine. An 1876 article in the Portland Daily Press described him as a "rabid Democrat." Records show Ann's last name as Lancey, Lancy, or Laney. She had three daughters, Nelly/Nellie M. (married name Hunnewell) born 1858, Susan W. born 1859, and Annie E. (married name Milliken) born 1862. Her daughter Susan died at three years old on February 25, 1863.

Ann was active in the Universalist church, including membership in the Ladies' Aid Society. She was also a member of the Pittsfield, Maine Grange. Her obituary published in the Pittsfield Advertiser described her as a "very zealous" temperance worker who was active in several local temperance groups. In 1873, Ann signed her name to a "Call For a Woman Suffrage Convention in Maine" published in Woman's Journal. The call was signed by more than 200 people representing 8 counties. The resulting convention included the formation of the Maine Woman Suffrage Association, of which Ann was elected treasurer in 1873 and 1876. According to The History of Woman Suffrage, the Maine Woman Suffrage Association was active from 1873 to 1876, but there was little activity until 1885 when the association underwent a revitalization and was reorganized. In 1899, Ann was part of a group of women who presented a petition to the Maine Legislature supporting the enactment of a law exempting women from taxation on the grounds that taxation without representation is tyranny. It was referred to the Committee on Taxation, which granted a hearing and reported that the petitioners had "leave to withdraw."

Ann lived for many years in Pittsfield, Maine. After the death of her husband on April 23, 1898, she lived with her daughter Annie and her grandson Lancey/Lancy Gould Milliken. Ann died at 91 years old on November 21, 1910. Her cause of death was recorded as apoplexy. She is buried in Pittsfield Village Cemetery in Pittsfield, Maine.


On her suffrage work, see "Call For a Woman Suffrage Convention in Maine," Woman's Journal, January 25, 1873, 28; "Matters in Maine. Pleading for the Ballot. Convention of Women Suffragists," Portland Daily Press, February 13, 1875, 2; "Maine," in History of Woman Suffrage, Vol. 3, ed. by Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Matilda Joslyn Gage (Rochester, NY: Charles Mann Printing Co., 1886), 351-66; "Maine," in History of Woman Suffrage, Vol. 4, edited by Susan B. Anthony and Ida Husted Harper (Indianapolis: Hollenbeck Press, 1902), 688-94 [LINK]; "Margaret W. Campbell," Woman's Journal, July 21, 1894, 225-26; Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Maine: Sixty-Ninth Legislature (Augusta: Kennebec Journal Print, 1899), 206, 354; Journal of the Senate of Maine: Sixty-Ninth Legislature (Augusta: Kennebec Journal Print, 1899), 190, 316; "Woman Suffrage: Maine," in Tribune Almanac and Political Register, ed. by John Fitch Cleveland, F. J. Ottarson, Alexander Jacob Schem, Henry Eckford Rhoades, Edward McPherson (Vol XII, no. 1, January 1900), 121; Lucy H. Day; Helen N. Bates; and Sara P. Anthoine, "Historical Sketch of the Maine Woman Suffrage Association," League of Women Voters Mrs Wing's Scrapbook 69.129.2. 101, For census records, see United States Census, 1860, Ann M Lancy in entry for Isaac H Lancy; United States Census, 1870, Ann M Lancy in entry for William K Lancy; United States Census, 1900, Ann M Lancey, Pittsfield, Somerset, Maine; United States Census, 1910, Ann M Lancy, Pittsfield, Somerset, Maine. On her husband, see "Go It Doctor," Daily Kennebec Journal, July 23, 1875, 2; "Extensive Failure in the Lumber Trade - The State of Maine Suffers," Boston Globe, November 8, 1875, 5; "Local and State News," Daily Kennebec Journal, November 8, 1875, 3; "By Telegraph. From Augusta. Legislative Matters," Portland Daily Press, February 17, 1876, 2. On her 91st birthday, see "The 91st Birthday of Mrs W K Lancey Observed," Bangor Daily News, May 2, 1910, 9; "Celebrated 91st Birthday," Pittsfield Advertiser, May 5, 1910, 5. On her death, see "Mrs. Ann Gould Lancey," Pittsfield Advertiser, November 24, 1910, 5, 6. Records on her death can be found in "Maine Vital Records, 1670-1921" and "Maine, Nathan Hale Cemetery Collection, ca. 1780-1980" accessed via FamilySearch.

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