Biographical Database of NAWSA Suffragists, 1890-1920
Biography of Josephine H. Mastick (aka Josephine L. Hinchman Mastick), 1860-1945
By Lynn Cole, Writer, Florence, Italy
First Vice President California Women's Suffrage Association 1902-1908
Josephine L Hinchman was born in California on August 22, 1860, to Thomas W. Hinchman and Isabella Maria Hinchman (nee Rogers). Thomas W. Hinchman was a Director of American Executive Bank, New York until 1849. He moved his family to Alameda, California, where he became an Internal Revenue Collector in 1860 and investor. During his tenure at the Internal Revenue Service, he met Backus Libbeus Bartlet and invested in the Bartlet Soda Manufacturing company for a brief time. Her mother, lovingly known as Belle, was a suffrage activist in New York and continued supporting women's suffrage throughout her life in California. Josephine had six other siblings: William, Charles, Walworth, Gertrude, Helen, Augusta, and an adopted sister from Canada, Delia.
On January 17, 1884, Josephine H. Hinchman married Rubens Wood Mastick who was a well-respected businessman and real estate developer in Alameda, California and Seattle, Washington, where they lived during the period of 1935 through 1937 according to newspaper records. The Mastics were a prominent family in Alameda. Rubens's father, George H. Mastick, was a distinguished lawyer and regarded as the father of Alameda. Many public buildings bear the Mastick family name in Alameda.
The push for women to hold seats on boards of education and local government was a suffragist strategy. Many ran as independents, such as Mrs. I.N. Chapman, who ran for the seat in Alameda in March 1901. Josephine was part of the committee to get Mrs. Chapman elected.
Josephine Mastick was part of the suffrage movement from 1901 until the constitutional ratification of the 19th Amendment on August 18, 1920. She held the office of first vice president in the Women's Suffrage Association in Hayward from 1902 through 1908. The issues of the day besides pressing for the amendment to the constitution were child labor, raising the age of consent to 18, and creating juvenile courts. With the help of the Women's Franchise League, in August 1911, the Hayward Club Women's Suffrage League was formed, and Josephine was elected president.
The Women's Suffrage League took part in the drive to push Proposition 8, which would change the California Constitution to allow women full suffrage. They used displays, with the yellow colors of the suffragists calling the attention of voters in the final weeks of the campaign. They won in October 1911 -- by only 3,587 votes -- with the rural districts carrying the victory.
In December 1911, the women of Hayward County, California, participated in their first bond election. Over 400 women registered to vote in the district. It was an incubator for the power of the women's vote. Education was a topic that many in the movement felt passionate about, and the bonds won.
Josephine held office in many other women's clubs throughout her life. She dedicated herself to education, labor rights, and many other charitable causes.
On August 6, 1945, Josephine L. Hinchman Mastick died, in Berkeley, California. She was survived by her three children, Reuben Wood Mastick Jr., Margery Mastick Keane, and Lucretia Mastick Blagen.
Marriage, Josephine H. Hinchman to Reubens H. Mastick, January 17, 1884. http://files.usgwarchives.net/ca/alameda/vitals/marriages/hinchman15mr.txt
US Census 1880 State of California, San Francisco June 8, 1880 p. 16
"Women Suffragists Close Convention," The San Francisco Call (San Francisco, California, United States) Sunday, October 26, 1902, pg. 28 https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1904-07-17/ed1/seq30/#date1=1899&index=2&date2=1949&words=Mastick+R+W&searchType=basic&sequence=0&state=&rows=20&proxtext=R+W+Mastick&y=15&x=15&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1
"Woman Would Serve as School Director," The San Francisco Call (San Francisco, California, United States) Sunday, March 24, 1901, pg. 15 https://newspapers.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s67m1g8n
"Obituary, Mastick," The San Francisco Examiner (San Francisco, California, United States) Wednesday, Aug 8, 1945, pg. 13 08 Aug 1945, 13 - The San Francisco Examiner at Newspapers.com.pdf
"Over Four Hundred Women Register For Bond Election Next Saturday," The Haywards Journal (Hayward, California, United States) Tuesday December 12, 1911, pg. Hayward Journal 1911.pdf