Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920

Biography of Almira M. Green Straughen, 1870-1939

By Tessa Dulaney, student, Michigan State University

Almira M. Green was born in Patch Grove, Wisconsin on August 3, 1870 to Chauncey Green and Mary B. Bergin Green. She was one of four children. When Almira was eight years old, the family moved to Clay County, Kansas. She graduated from Clay Center High School in 1888. She joined the Methodist church while living in Clay Center, Kansas. Almira moved to Chandler, Lincoln County, Oklahoma in 1893. She married Horace E. Straughen on June 21, 1898 and they had one child, a daughter named Florence. Straughen's husband worked as the County Clerk for Lincoln County in the early 1900s while she worked alongside him as the Deputy County Clerk.

Straughen became involved in the Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) in 1903 and became president of the Lincoln County WCTU in 1907. She served as editor of the Oklahoma Messenger in 1911. As state recording secretary from 1910 through 1914 for Oklahoma's WCTU, she made detailed reports through the Oklahoma Messenger which were well received.

Straughen worked very closely with Oklahoma's WCTU president Abbie B. Hillerman. In 1911 she attended the state press association's meeting at Shawnee, Oklahoma, and spoke about "Prohibition and Women's Suffrage." Then Governor Robert L. Williams appointed her and Hillerman as delegates to the "Taft Peace League Meeting" in Oklahoma City. Straughen was elected state treasurer of the WCTU from 1914 through 1918. She attended several state and national conventions. She became a life member of the WCTU on October 12, 1916. She remained the editor of the Oklahoma Messenger for 7 years, resigning in 1918 before she and her husband moved to Delta Farms, Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana on September 15, 1921.

While in Oklahoma, Straughen stayed involved in her church and war relief during World War I and served in other women's clubs, including the local Chandler woman suffrage organization; she was elected its President in 1904. She often participated and gave readings on Susan B. Anthony Day. She even escorted Anna Howard Shaw and Laura Gregg when they visited Oklahoma City in December 1904. She attended several local and state conventions. She was selected as an alternate delegate to represent Chandler at Equal Suffrage Convention of Oklahoma and Indian Territories held in Chickasha, Oklahoma on October 26 - 28, 1905. By 1908 Straughen served as Auditor for the state's Oklahoma Woman's Suffrage Association.

She spent the rest of her life in Louisiana, dying on December 21, 1939 at the age of 69. Almira Straughen is buried in Magnolia Cemetery in Houma, Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana.

SOURCES:

Lincoln County News (Chandler, Oklahoma), 1 October 1920; Buffalo Republican (Buffalo, Oklahoma), 4 October 1917; The Bristow Record (Bristow, Oklahoma), 9 March 1916; The Weekly News (Marksville, Louisiana), 13 January 1940; Chandler Daily Publicist (Chandler, Oklahoma), 16 December 1904, 15 February 1905 and 19 October 1905; The Union Signal: A Journal of Social Welfare Vol. 45-46 (National Woman's Christian Temperance Union, 1918); Abbie B. Hillerman, ed., History of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Indian Territory, Oklahoma Territory, and State of Oklahoma, 1888-1925 (Sapulpa, Oklahoma: Jennings Printing and Stationery Company, 1925), 77; The Chandler News (Chandler, Oklahoma), 24 June 1898 and 22 September 1904; Sapulpa Herald (Sapulpa, Oklahoma), 13 October 1916; U.S. Federal Census, 1900 and 1910, Chandler, Lincoln County, Oklahoma; U.S. Federal Census, 1930, LaFourche, LaFourche County, Louisiana; "Horace E. Straughen," U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current, accessed on Ancestry.com on August 24, 2020.

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