New Hampshire Educator, Suffragist, Civic Leader: Millicent S. Morse of Manchester (1866-1966)

Photograph 1912 Hallsville (grammar school, Manchester NH) Graduating Class. Millicent Morse is pictured seated (in the middle of the first seated row) as assistant principal. From Manchester Historic Association.

Millicent S. “Millie” Morse was born on 9 March 1866 in Stoneham MA, daughter of Charles E. Morse & Lucy L. Eames. Her father was a farmer.  She was single, and moved with them by 1900 to Manchester, New Hampshire where they had a house at 963 Valley Street.

She would live there to the last of her days. Millicent died on 11 Nov 1966 in New Hampshire. She is buried in Pine Grove Cemetery, Lot No 4455, Poplar Lawn. She was aged 100 years 8m, 2 days.

Old postcard of Hallsville School, circa 1910 from collection of J.W. Brown.

She grew up in Stoneham MA, but lived more than half of her life in Manchester, New Hampshire, working as a teacher in the public school system. [The 1900 U.S. census first shows her living in Manchester]. In 1904 the Yearbook of the National Education Association of the United States lists her name as having joined that association in 1890, and that she was a teacher in public schools. The other members list their college education, and none is shown beside her name. The 1940 U.S. census states her highest education achieved was 8th grade elementary school.

Bakersville School, Manchester NH. Photograph taken c1896.

The Manchester Historic Association photograph collection provides insight into her past. In 1912 a photograph identifies her as assistant principal of Hallsville School, Manchester NH. In 1915 she was ‘Master’s Assistant’ at Hallsville School. In 1919-1920 she was a teacher at Bakersville school, Manchester NH. She lived at 963 Valley St. in that year. In 1930 she was a teacher at West Side High School. Possibly she had retired by 1936 as the city directory does not provide an occupation for her listing. Between 1954- 1957 she was still living at 963 Valley Street, Manchester NH.

Other interests during those years apparently included Zoology and the Manchester Institute of Arts and Sciences. The Proceedings of that institution state that she attended a meeting on 30 October 1901 called at the Institute to form a section in Zoology. She was elected as one of the officers, “Treasurer–Millicent S. Morse” (elected for 1902).

Suffrage workers, from The Suffragist magazine 1918.

As early as 1910 she was involved with promoting suffrage. The 42nd Annual Report of the National-American Woman Suffrage Association given at the convention held at Washington D.C. April 14 to 19 inclusive, pp 128-129. (1910). The Section about progress in NEW HAMPSHIRE gives us insight as to suffrage progress a decade before women were given the right to vote.
During the past year the woman suffrage question has had a wider bearing in our state than at any time since our campaign in 1903. New Hampshire Woman’s Suffrage Association offered twenty-five dollar prizes for the best two essays on woman suffrage, decision to be based on literary merit and weight of argument. The Lecturer of the State Grange required every Grange to have a paper or discussion on the question. There are about 275 Granges and about 20,000 embers. All did not compete for the prizes, but over fifty sent in excellent papers. Henry H. Metcalf, a staunch and loyal friend of the cause, won the first prize of fifteen dollars. Mrs. Eva S. Blake, of Meredith, was awarded the second prize of ten dollars. Mr. Metcalf read his paper at an open meeting of the state Grange, held in Manchester. There was an immense audience. President Nichols, of Dartmouth College, was the principal speaker. Mr. Metcalf edits the Granite Monthly. His article was printed in the January number, and two hundred extra copies have been sent throughout the state.”
– Public addresses have been given by Henry H. Metcalf, Mrs. Mary I. Wood, Mrs. Agnes M. Jenks, Mrs. Florence T. Davis, Mrs. M.E. Corbett, Rev. H.G. Ives, Mrs. Susan W. Ives, Miss Millicent S. Morse, and Miss Mary N. Chase.
– Thousands of leaflets have been distributed to Grangers, members of the Legislature, and to individuals who have agreed to circulate them.
– The Concord Club, Mrs. Agnes M. Jenks, President, led in the petition work. Over seven hundred names were secured. One woman in Newport secured about two hundred names. Nearly 3000 signatures were obtained in the state.
Miss Millicent S. Morse attended the National Convention, held in Seattle, as the President’s proxy. She gave a very interesting report at our annual meeting, held in Manchester. We were cheered in having with us Mrs. Fannie J. Fernald and Miss Anne Burgess, of Maine. This is the third time Mrs. Fernald has come to us to inspire and cheer us with warm words of greeting from her state. Rev. Ida C. Hultin, the principal speaker, gave an eloquent and masterly address. More money was pledged at this Convention than any previous Convention.
– Five hundred copies of the Minutes have been printed and nearly all of them have been distributed.
– The State President has taken the press work in hand. Over twenty newspapers have a agreed to print our articles one, the Manchester Union, which goes all over the state.
– A circular letter has been sent to over five hundred ministers in the state, asking them to send articles for the press, also to arrange for one public meeting.
– The President called on Governor Quinby and his wife. Both gladly joined the Association and headed the petition.
– The New Hampshire Woman Suffrage Association is fortunate in having in its ranks many of the most prominent men and women in the state. We shall press on with undaunted courage, knowing that right will triumph. It is for us to work with patience and hope. MARY N. CHASE, President. OLIVE M. KIMBALL, Secretary.

She apparently continued to work on behalf of suffrage. A 1915 newspaper states Millicent S. Morse was then President of the NH Suffrage organization.

===PARTIAL GENEALOGY OF MILLICENT S. MORSE====

Thomas Morse & Margaret Ann King of England

Samuel-2 Morse (1576-1654) & Elizabeth Jasper of Boxsted England and Medfield, Suffolk, Massachusetts Bay, British Colonial America

Captain Joseph-3 Morse (c1613-c1654) & Hannah (Phillips) Boyden

Joseph-4 Morse (1649-1718) & Mehitable Wood

Joseph-5 Morse (1679-1734) and Prudence Adams

Deacon Jason-6 Morse (1705-1780) and Experience Morse of Sturbridge MA.

Deacon Jason Morse Jr., son of Joseph & Experience (Morse) Morse, was b 12 May 1740 in Sturbridge MA. He died 10 March 1846.; He lived in Sturbridge MA and Gorham VT. He m. 16 March 1759 to Phebe Stacy, daughter of John and Sarah Stacy. She b 8 March 1740-1 in Sturbridge MA, and d. 4 April 1805. They are buried in Oak Ridge Cemetery, Southbridge, Worcester Co. MA.
———————-
Children of Jason & Phebe (Stacy) Morse:
1. Anna Morse, b. 10 Oct 1759, d. 9 July 1776
2. Enos Morse, b. 15 April 1761 Sturbridge MA; bap. 13 May 1764 Sturbridge MA; he m. Anna Baldwin, moved to Riga NY.
3. John Morse, b. 3 Feb 1763, bap 13 May 1764 Sturbridge MA, d. 7 Jan 1778.
4. Henry Morse, b. 12 Jan 1765 Sturbridge MA; he m. 7 Jan 1790 Judith Marsh. They moved to Wardsboro VT.
5. +Ephraim Morse, b 2 Feb 1767 Sturbridge MA
6. Jason Morse, b. 28 Feb 1769 Sturbridge MA; he m1) 4 April 1793 Cate Plimpton. He m2d) 1811 Kate Colburn.
7. Sarah Morse, b. 10 April 1771 Sturbridge MA
8. Phebe Morse, b 5 June 1773, prob d.y.
9. Phebe Morse, b. 18 Oct 1774 Sturbridge MA
10. Martha Morse, b. 14 Sep 1776 Sturbridge MA
11. Experience Morse, b. 3 Feb 1779 Sturbridge MA

Ephraim Morse, son of Jason/James & Phebe (Stacy) Morse, b 2 Feb 1767 Sturbridge MA, d. 21 June 1833 Craftsbury, Orleans Co. VT. He m. Damaris Ellis, daughter of Samuel & Abigail Ellis. She was b. 17 Feb 1767 in Sturbridge MA and d. 23 Oct 1831, aged 60-61 in Craftsbury VT. He m2d) Abigail Sims. They are buried in Craftsbury Common Cemetery, Craftsbury VT.
——————————-
Children of Ephraim & Damaris (Ellis) Morse:
1. Lucinda Morse, born 29 Nov 1788 Sturbridge MA
1. Brilliant Morse, b. 11 May 1791 in Craftsbury VT
2. John Adelphia Morse, b 26 Feb 1794 Craftsbury VT, d. 1860
3. + Samuel Ellis/Ephraim Morse, b 4 January 1797 Craftsbury VT, d. 1848
4. Abigail Morse, b. 1803

Samuel Ellis/Ephraim Morse, son of Ephraim Morse, b 4 January 1797 Craftsbury VT, d 1848 Craftsbury VT. He married Judith Cook, dau of Charles & ELizabeth (Burbeck) Cook. She b. 20 Sep 1800, d. 1 April 1869 Craftsbury VT.
———————
Children of Samuel E. & Judith (Cook) Morse:
1. + Charles Edward Morse b abt 1824 in East Craftsbury Vermont
2. Nancy C. Morse, b 1828, d. 1829
3. Caroline Morse, b. 1832, d. 1914
4. Samuel E. Morse, b. 1837, d. 1916

Charles Edward Morse, son of Samuel E. & Judith (Cook) Morse b abt 1824 in East Craftsbury Vermont, d 7 Apr 1905; He m. 4 Dec 1860 in Weston MA to Lucy L. Eames, daughter of Argill/Asgil and Sarah (Savage) Eames. She was b. 2 Oct 1838 in Waterville Maine, died 6 April 1924 in Manchester NH. Had also lived much earlier in Stoneham MA. She was buried in Pine Grove Cemetery, Manchester NH. He is buried in Chester Village Cemetery, Chester NH. In 1865 MA State Census occupation teacher. He registered in Woburn MA for the Civil War Draft.
—————
1910 US Census > NH > Hillsborough > Manchester > 963 Valley Street >
Lucy L Morse 71
Millicent S Morse 43
—————-
1940 US Census > NH > Hillsborough > Manchester > 963 Valley Street
Millicent Morse 74 Widowed
John Winter 40 boarder
Seneca Barnard 84 boarder
Everett Whipple 68 boarder
———————–
Children of Charles E. & Lucy L. (Eames) Morse:
1. Charles Nelson Morse, b. 12 March 1862 Woburn MA; he died 4 May 1951. Possibly the grave in Fairview Cemetery, West Hartford CT is his.
2. Henry Herbert Morse, b. 5 July 1863 Woburn MA; died 26 Feb 1942 in Manchester NH. He married 29 Aug 1885 in Manchester NH to Cora Belle Smith, daughter of Joseph O. & Rebecca J. (Prescott) Smith. She was b abt 1865 in Enfield NH, and d. 12 Nov 1938 in Hooksett, Merrimack Co. NH. Buried Pine Grove Cemetery, Manchester NH/ He was an electrician for Amoskeag Corporation per his death cert.
3. +Millicent “Milly” Morse born 9 March 1866 Stoneham MA, died Dec 1966. This story is about her. See photograph and biography above.
4. Thomas Eames Morse, b 4 Sep 1872 Stoneham MA, d. 5 Oct 1938. He was a member of Fidelity Masonic Lodge in Brookline MA. Occupation: newspaper.

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3 Responses to New Hampshire Educator, Suffragist, Civic Leader: Millicent S. Morse of Manchester (1866-1966)

  1. Pingback: Was Your New Hampshire Ancestor a Suffragist? | Cow Hampshire

  2. Jennifer Day says:

    Thank you for the article. Took a while; I mapped out my Morse ancestors, and Millicent happens to be my 6th cousin 3x removed! I have documented as a cited source this cowhampshireblog.com article as a web link for Millicent Morse on my family tree at Ancestry.com

  3. Pingback: New Hampshire’s Centennial Celebration of the 19th Amendment | Cow Hampshire

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