By Melba Porter Hay
Preeminent Kentucky reformer and women's rights recommend Madeline McDowell Breckinridge (1872--1920) used to be on the leading edge of social switch through the past due 19th and early 20th centuries. A descendant of Henry Clay and the daughter of 2 of Kentucky's such a lot admired households, Breckinridge had a remarkably assorted activist profession that integrated roles within the promoting of public healthiness, schooling, women's rights, and charity. founding father of the Lexington Civic League and linked Charities, Breckinridge effectively lobbied to create parks and playgrounds and to set up a juvenile courtroom approach in Kentucky. She additionally grew to become president of the Kentucky equivalent Rights organization, served as vp of the nationwide American girl Suffrage organization, or even campaigned around the kingdom for the League of countries. within the first biography of Breckinridge considering 1921, Madeline McDowell Breckinridge and the conflict for a brand new South, Melba Porter Hay attracts on newly came across correspondence and wealthy own interviews together with her woman affiliates to light up the interesting lifetime of this significant Kentucky activist. Deftly balancing Breckinridge's public reform efforts together with her deepest matters, Hay tells the tale of Madeline's marriage to Desha Breckinridge, editor of the Lexington usher in, and the way she used the fit to her virtue by way of selling social explanations within the newspaper. Hay additionally chronicles Breckinridge's ordeals with tuberculosis and amputation, and emotionally attempting episodes of kinfolk betrayal and intercourse scandals. Hay describes how Breckinridge's actual struggles and private losses remodeled her from a privileged socialite right into a selfless recommend for the deprived. Later as vice chairman of the nationwide American ladies Suffrage organization, Breckinridge lobbied for Kentucky's ratification of the 19th modification, which gave ladies the appropriate to vote in 1920. whereas devoting a lot of her lifestyles to the girl suffrage flow at the neighborhood and nationwide degrees, she additionally supported the antituberculosis flow, social courses for the terrible, obligatory university attendance, and legislation regulating baby hard work. In bringing to lifestyles this striking reformer, Hay indicates how Breckinridge championed Kentucky's social improvement throughout the revolutionary period.
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Extra resources for Madeline McDowell Breckinridge and the Battle for a New South (Topics in Kentucky History)
Rather, she found the newly repaired tennis courts too inviting to spend much time practicing the piano. In fact, tennis was so important that in April Mrs. 35 In May Madge journeyed to New York City to visit her first roommate, Mrs. Bristow, and the Houstons. She found her former roommate’s friends stylish but not pretty and rather stiff. School continued to be fun. On one occasion she was invited to tea at Miss Porter’s. ” Ever interested in clothes, she also expressed a desire for another gingham to wear with an Irish lace collar.
During this time she received letters and visits from numerous friends. John Fox Jr. ”24 In the autumn Madge visited Marion Houston in New York, and her foot seemed to have improved. Mrs. McDowell and Aunt Mag supplied clothes for the trip as pre-Christmas gifts, while her mother remarked that Major McDowell had accepted a position as president of Kentucky Utilities at a salary of $1,200 per year. 25 Given the foot problem, the pain it caused, and the hindrance of walking with crutches, it is amazing that Madge took part in so many social activities during these years.
On one occasion, Nettie Belle found Madge’s account of a “wolf hunt” so amusing that her family wanted to know if she had made it up. ”14 In August 1892, Madge, her parents, Milton and Nettie Belle Smith, and Dr. David W. Yandell traveled to Colorado in Smith’s private railroad car for a month’s visit. 15 The Colorado trip provided adventure and even a bit of danger. The men spent much of the time hunting and fishing in the Rockies. One day while they were out hunting, the women, left behind in the railroad car on a sidetrack, became bored and hired a man with a two-horse wagon to take them for a drive.