Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Final Thoughts

There is no doubt that the women mentioned and discussed in this blog were pioneers and the suffragists of Maryland.  Had it not been for their efforts, women rights may not have advanced to what it is today.  

Lavinia Margaret Engle

Finally, I think Lavinia Margaret Engle is worth mentioning because she was the first woman to serve on the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners and in 1929 she became the first woman from Montgomery County to be elected to the Maryland House of Delegates.  Additionally, Ms. Engle was one of the founders of the League of Women Voters of Montgomery County in 1920.  

Edith Houghton Hooker

Another great suffragist pioneer in Maryland was Edith Hooker.  She was the first woman accepted into Johns Hopkins University Medical School.  Additionally, she was an active advocate for women's right to vote in Maryland which began in 1910, however the efforts would come to no avail until 1919 when Congress passed the 19th amendment.    

Maryland's resistance to women voting

I also found this online on the Maryland Archives website.  This Resolution is the Maryland General Assembly's reaction to Congress' 19th amendment, granting women the right to vote in the United States.  Also, it distinctly  states that Maryland will not ratify this amendment, however, as my previous post shows, Maryland's ratification was not needed.

Women can vote

I found this online on the Maryland Archives website.  This is the bill allowing women to vote in Maryland, thanks to the 19th amendment of the United States Constitution.  Although, Maryland did not ratify this amendment, many other states did, thus forcing Maryland to accept it as their law.

Emma Maddox Funck

Emma Maddox Funck was the sister of Etta Maddox and like her sister was a suffragist.  Mrs. Funck was widely involved in clubs and organizations supporting woman suffrage movements.  She was the president of the Baltimore Suffrage Club from 1897 to 1920, which was a part of the National Woman Suffrage Association.  Additionally, Mrs. Funck was the president of the Maryland Woman Suffrage Association from 1904 to 1920.  In 1921, Emma along with five other women found the Maryland Federation of Republican Women and she became the president of the Baltimore Republican Club.  Mrs. Funck also ran for legislature in 1923 and ran for Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas in Baltimore, however, she did not win either.  "Mrs. Funck led a full and active life…in her own way, (she) helped to make some of the gains upon which feminists who followed her based their actions and moved ahead to make additional gains for all women" (Wallace, 145-146).[1]

[1]Wallace, Mal Hee Son. "Emma J. Maddox Funck, 1853-1940:  Maryland Suffrage                                  Leader" In Notable Maryland Women, edited by Winifred G. Helmes, 225-29.                          Cambridge:  Tidewater Publishers, 1977.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Purpose of the Blog

Before this project, when I thought of the women suffrage movement, I would think of New York, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan Anthony.  During my research I discovered that Baltimore also experienced the women suffrage movement and that there are other women who are responsible for the great changes in Baltimore and Maryland.  In this blog I will discuss some of the great women who were pioneer suffragists that paved the way for the future of women in Maryland. 

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Maryland Admits Women to the Bar

This is the actual bill stating that women are permitted to practice law in Maryland.  It is from the 1902 session of the Maryland General Assembly.  This bill marks a big change for women in Maryland which Etta Maddox along with other women worked for.  

As a result of the Maryland General Assembly changing the law to allow women to practice law in Maryland, Etta Maddox became the first woman admitted to the Maryland bar.[1]

Finally, this article is significant because it mentions Etta Maddox's first trial and it mentions that she is representing her brother-in-law.  Again, had it not been for Maryland legislature changing the law, Etta Maddox would not have had the opportunity to be counsel in these cases.[2]

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Margaret Brent, the real first woman attorney in Maryland

According to majority of sources I've come in contact regarding Etta Maddox, Margaret Brent is referred to as Maryland's first woman lawyer, however, the sources always point out that the actual first woman attorney in Maryland was Margaret Brent. According to the book, Notable Maryland Women,

In Maryland and in other North American settlements most litigants depended upon their own legal ability or on that of experienced but unprofessional attorneys until well into the eighteenth century. Nor was it unusual for women to appear in the colonial courts.[1]

Margaret Brent is not only known as Maryland's first woman lawyer, she could also be known as a suffragist. According to the Maryland State Archives website, "on January 21, 1648, Margaret Brent appeared before the assembly and requested two votes. She asked one for herself as a landowner and one as Lord Baltimore's attorney."[2]

[1]Masson, Margaret W. "Margaret Brent, 1601-1671: Lawyer, Landholder-Entrepreneur." In Notable Maryland Women, edited by Winifred G. Helmes, 44. Cambridge: Tidewater Publishers, 1977.

[2] The Maryland State Archives. "Margaret Brent (ca.1601-ca. 1671)." (accessed November 29, 2009).

New River Notes. Picture of Margaret Brent, (accessed November 29, 2009).

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

In re Maddox

I added a link on the left of the page labeled as In re Maddox.  This link will lead you to the case before the Maryland Court of Appeals regarding Etta Maddox's application for admission to the Maryland State Bar and the Court of Appeals decision.  I found this case on Westlaw.[1]

This case is important because it is regarding Etta Maddox's application to be admitted to the Maryland Bar.  During this time, women were not permitted to practice law in Maryland.  The Maryland Court of Appeals decided that " we are not to be understood as disparaging the laudable ambition of females to become lawyers.  It is for the general assembly to declare what class of person shall be admitted to the bar.  We have no power to enact legislation.  The courts can only interpret what the legislature adopts. "  

This article is from the Baltimore Sun.  It announces the Maryland Court of Appeals decision to not admit Etta Maddox to the Bar.  Also, it announces Ms. Maddox's plans to take the issue to legislature. [2]

[1] In re Maddox,  55 L.R.A. 298, 93 Md. 727, 50 A.487 (1901).

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Background information about Etta H. Maddox

As I was researching at the Enoch Pratt library in the Maryland Room, I found the book Notable Maryland Women.  This book gives background information about Etta Maddox and it explains why she is significant to Maryland's history.  Etta Maddox was born to 1860 to Susannah and John Maddox in Baltimore.  She graduated from Eastern High School in 1873, graduated from the Peabody Conservatory of Music and graduated from the old Baltimore Law School on June 8, 1901.  However, when Maddox graduated from law school, women were not permitted to take the bar examination.  Miss Maddox was determined to take the bar examination, thus she, through her attorney, Howard Bryant, filed a brief with the Court of Appeals of Maryland to determine if she has a right to take the bar examination.  The Court of Appeals of Maryland denied Miss Maddox, determining that they did not have the power to change a law as legislature intended it;  only legislature has that power.  Therefore, Miss Maddox, along with other women attorneys from other states, went to Maryland's General Assembly .  In 1902 Senator Jacob M. Moses introduced a bill intending to change the law to including women to be permitted to practice law in Maryland; which was passed.  Etta Maddox took the bar examination on June 1902 and was sworn in as a member of the bar in September 1902.  In light of these events, Etta H. Maddox is known as Maryland's first woman lawyer, however Miss Maddox is really Maryland's second woman lawyer.  The first woman lawyer in Maryland was Margaret Brent.

(See bibliography 1)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Research Process

I plan on conducting my research at the school library, The Maryland Room at the Enoch Pratt Library, The Maryland Historical Society Library and the Maryland Law Library.  Etta H. Maddox had a sister, Emma Maddox Funck, who was president of the Baltimore Suffrage Club and president of the Maryland Woman Suffrage Association who I will also like to focus on in this research project.   The questions I'm posing with this research project are the following:  
1)  How did Etta H. Maddox and Emma Maddox Funck advocate for women rights in Baltimore?
2)  Although Etta H. Maddox is known as Maryland's first woman lawyer, that is not necessarily true, Margaret Brent was and I would like to explore more about her also.  

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Women Rights/Suffrage Movement in Baltimore

I would like to focus on Women Rights movements in Baltimore for my research topic.  I will focus on Maryland's first woman lawyer, Etta Maddox and how she advocated for Maryland to admit women to the bar.  I also will like to focus on other movements and as my research progresses I will know exactly what they are.