Emma Smith DeVoe

To begin, there is a great deal of information about DeVoe available, more than I can cover here, but if you are looking for more detail, I recommend reviewing digital copies of her papers on Primarily Washington’s website, and Jennifer M. Ross-Nazzal’s book Winning the West for Women: The Life of Suffragist Emma Smith DeVoe, publisher website and on WorldCat, and/or her article “Emma Smith DeVoe and the South Dakota Suffrage Campaigns,” South Dakota History 33(3) (Fall 2003), 235-262.

More general links:


emmasmithdevoe 1897
Willard and Livermore, American Women: Fifteen Hundred Biographies… (1897), 239. A scan of an actual photo version in Bryn Mawr Collections, ID bmcccatt03100205.

Emma Smith was born in Roseville, Illinois in 1848 and grew up in Washington (Tazewell County), Illinois.  Her parents encouraged her talent for music, and at age 19, she became the head of the department of music at Eureka College.  In 1879, she married John Henry DeVoe, who also lived in Washington, IL, and they migrated to Huron, Dakota Territory in 1881. There, they were key members during the erection of the First Baptist Church’s second building.  In 1883, they moved northwest to Faulk County and started a community that was named DeVoe (for them). When the railroad was not constructed that direction, they moved back to Huron after a year.  She was also active in a local literary society, the Women’s Relief Corps, and local musical efforts [Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 235-238; Willard and Livermore (1897), 239].

Her career as a public speaker began in 1889 while serving as assistant state superintendent of the Franchise Department for the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (W.C.T.U.) of South Dakota.  “In a convention in St. Lawrence, S. Dak., in June of that year, she read an essay on ‘Constitutional Prohibition and How to Secure It,’ which was copied by various newspapers throughout the State and brought her before the reading public” [Willard and Livermore (1897), 239; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 240].  During the major suffrage campaign leading up to the 1890 election, “DeVoe’s fitness for the work, coupled with her untiring energy, placed her in the front rank of the advocates of equal suffrage” [Willard and Livermore (1897), 239]. 

“Great credit is due Mrs. P.E. Johnson, of Highmore, in discovering in Mrs. Emma S. DeVoe, of this place, the elements of an effective worker, and in persuading her to canvass the district assigned her to proclaim woman’s wrongs and the way to right them” — from Huron, signed “B”
The Woman’s Tribune, March 29, 1890 in “Page 28 : [news clipping: Woman’s Tribune letter to the editor],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

Emma Smith DeVoe, as superintendent of Woman’s Day for the Beadle County fair in 1889, “to set the equal suffrage ball rolling” recruited a number of state leaders interested in suffrage and prohibition to speak at the fair, including Libbie Wardall, Alice Pickler, Rev. Helen Putnam, Sophia Harden, and Helen Barker, as well as short remarks on equal suffrage from several “brothers-in-law of the W.C.T.U.”: Rev. M. Barker, Rev. English, E.T. Langley, and Alonzo Wardall [The Union Signal, November 7, 1889, in “Page 09 : South Dakota — Equal Suffrage Work,” “Page 09 : [news clipping: “Woman’s Day”],” Dakota Farmer (Huron SD), November 1889, “Page 66 : Entire Page,” and “Page 67 : Entire Page.” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

The DeVoes hosted meetings to plan the first state suffrage convention at their home and the Baptist church in Huron [“Page 06 : A Special Meeting,” and The Union Signal, November 7, 1889, in “Page 09 : South Dakota — Equal Suffrage Work,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]. The DeVoe house became “the headquarters of the noted workers within the State” and “a haven of rest during the campaign” [The Dakota Ruralist, April 19, 1890 in “Page 28 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe shows skill],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Willard and Livermore (1897), 239; C.H. Ellis, History of Faulk County, South Dakota (Faulkton SD: Record Print, 1909), 238; “Prominent Suffragists,” in Mrs. John A. Logan, ed., The Part Taken by Women in American History (Wilmington DE: Perry-Nalle Publishing Co., 1912), 561].

DeVoe served as state lecturer for the S.D.E.S.A. and was active with Alice Pickler in the Franchise Department for the W.C.T.U.–holding meetings, distributing literature, and providing material for the press [Wessington Springs Herald (SD), May 30, 1890; Willard and Livermore (1897), 239; Page 09 : South Dakota — Equal Suffrage Work, Highmore Herald (SD), May 17, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” Faulk County Times (Faulkton SD), June 12, 1890, “Page 37 : Entire Page,” and Dakota Ruralist, August 16, 1890, “Page 57 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

DeVoe campaigned across the state for nearly a year (by schedule below) from December 1889 to the election in November 1890.  She typically spent several days in a county, visiting a different township or precinct each day, speaking on suffrage, singing, and organizing local suffrage clubs. The county visits often concluded with a county convention where a county association was organized. In the first part of her campaign work, “the officers chosen at these places are usually men who are expected to distribute literature to the people of their respective localities, and to look after the interests of the cause at the polls on election day” [The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]. Later, she started holding interest meetings with local women before or the morning/afternoon after her public lectures. During her Black Hills tour in May 1890, she inspired Marie Gaston, Belle Hammond, and Mrs. S.A. (or H.S.?) Way to continue field work of their own in the region [“Page 48 : Suffrage Campaign in the Black Hills,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

In The Woman’s Tribune, she gave credit to Susan B. Anthony for inspiring her — “She gave us such instruction, such help, that workers like myself, for instance, feel that we can do something” [The Woman’s Tribune (Boston), January 4, 1890 in “Page 09 : Among the Workers,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

Her speaking was described as being in the “feminine style” — being anecdotal and collegial — and though newspapers at the time called her talks successful, she still faced opposition, saying that “when I meet a man that is prejudiced I think there is no use arguing with him, and I offer a silent prayer for the Lord to have mercy: not only on his soul, but on his everlasting thick skull” [Quote p.246 cited Hecla Citizen (SD), June 27, 1890, and read more about her approach, speaking style, and arguments in Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 244-251].  Reportedly, after a talk in Parker, she “reported ‘so much ignorance that I couldn’t cut it with a knife—I was obliged to use a pick-ax and then I don’t believe I phased them'” [Nelson in Lauck et al., The Plains Political Tradition, vol. 1, 139]. A good example of the reporting about her style of speaking was printed in Onida Journal (SD), on April 19, 1890; an excerpt: “Her delivery is smooth, elegant and refined, yet emphatic, terse and strong… interspersed with witticisms… the whole was delicate, ladylike, soft and convincing” [Page 32 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe in Onida], Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].  She also refrained from complaining against or arguing with established political parties (unlike some of the national campaigners who came to South Dakota that year), in order to avoid alienating any potential individual suffrage supporters .  Historian Jennifer Ross-Nazzal noted, however, that while she put forward the image of propriety at all times, it can be seen in her correspondence with E.S.A. secretary Bailey that she also stood up for herself in contrast to expectations for propriety at the time [Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 252-254].

“not behind the other ladies of the committee in culture and ability.  As a speaker she is winning golden opinions on every side, although she has been on the platform but a short time.  She is assistant superintendent of the W.C.T.U. state franchise department, and assistant state organizer for the Equal Suffrage Association…. Is doing grand work in this department in Hyde county, at present writing.  She is visiting every union in the county, holding public meetings, ladies’ meetings, distributing quantities of free literature, securing subscriptions to the Woman’s Journal and Woman’s Tribune, and wherever she goes she forms an Equal Suffrage Association; and in some instances all the adult men and women in the audience have joined the suffrage society.”
The Union Signal, December 19, 1889, and The Woman’s Journal (Boston MA), January 18, 1890, “Page 66 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

“Mrs. Emma Smith DeVoe is showing great skill and energy as an organizer and lecturer among that class which make up the ‘bone and sinew’ of American civilization–the common people–she is sprightly, sparkling and versatile in her work.”
Daily Plainsman (Huron, SD), April 8, 1890.

Her husband, J.H. DeVoe, composed campaign songs for the suffrage movement that Emma sang at her lecture events [Willard and Livermore (1897), 239]. The both served on a committee for campaign music in the fall of 1889 [Wessington Springs Herald (SD), October 25, 1889].   In her campaigns, she sang John’s song “A Soldier’s Tribute to Women” — “My dear husband fortified me with a song of his composing before I started out, and after my lecture, I told them of woman’s work for the soldier and ended by singing the song… I gave them copies of the song and a thousand thanks.” [The Woman’s Tribune (Boston), January 4, 1890 in “Page 09 : Among the Workers”; Page 66 (a clipping on the page includes the lyrics of the song), Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]. 

On February 15, 1890, John and Emma DeVoe organized a celebration at the G.A.R. Hall in Huron in honor of Susan B. Anthony’s 70th birthday. For the event, she gave a talk on Anthony’s life and their acquaintance [Huron Daily Times (SD), February 17, 1890, “Page 26 : Susan B. Anthony Honored,” and “Page 26 : In Honor of Miss Anthony,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Huron Dakota Huronite (SD), February 20, 1890].

In April 1890, it made news when her name was put forward for street and water commissioner (maybe as an April Fools Day joke?) [Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 243].  She petitioned the council to be appointed “and some of the aldermen are disposed to grant the request” but another man was eventually selected for the position [Madison Daily Leader (SD), April 11, 1890; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 243].  

DeVoe organized Woman’s Day at the state fair in Aberdeen on September 17, 1890. With the Women’s Relief Corps, she arranged a mile-long procession with a women’s drum corps, the Knights of Pythias band, the Aberdeen Guards, the W.C.T.U., and the G.A.R. to the fairgrounds from the Hotel Dayton through the crowded and decorated downtown. With musical performances as well, DeVoe, Emma Cranmer, Rev. Olympia Brown, Susan B. Anthony, and Anna Howard Shaw spoke for two hours from 11am-2:30pm at the fair grandstand to over a thousand people. Alice Pickler and others were on the platform with them [Madison Daily Leader (SD), August 16, 1890, September 3, 1890; Wessington Springs Herald (SD), August 22, 1890, September 5, 1890, September 12, 1890; “Page 47 : Entire Page,” “Page 48 : Entire Page,” Daily News (Aberdeen SD), September 18, 1890, “Page 50 : Entire Page,” “Page 52 : Entire Page,” and Dakota Ruralist, September 13, 1890, “Page 57 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe, WSL Manuscripts; Ellis, History of Faulk County, 238; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 249].  

“People came out of their stores and shops; farmers filled both sides of the street, clear out to the ground, and they crowded around the speaker’s stand, eager to catch every word… dear Aunt Susan, I wish you could have seen her face, it just beamed.”
The Woman’s Tribune, October 11, 1890, “Page 57 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

Wessington Springs Herald (SD), September 5, 1890.

DeVoe was one of those who met in Huron to plan a state suffrage convention at Huron and signed the call with about forty other women to hold the convention on July 8th. She gave a field work report at the convention and after the leadership was re-organized, DeVoe stayed on as state lecturer when the S.D.E.S.A. was reorganized and as a member of the music committee [Madison Daily Leader (SD), June 24, 1890, July 10, 1890; Union County Courier (Elk Point SD), July 2, 1890; Kimball Graphic (SD), July 4, 1890; The Daily Plainsman (Huron, SD), July 10, 1890; “Page 31,” “Page 44 : The Convention,” and “Page 45 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Wittmayer, “The 1889-1890 Woman Suffrage Campaign,” 218]. 

On the way to the August 1890 convention in Mitchell, DeVoe stopped in Wolsey and, in Mitchell, she and other suffragists attended the speech of Robert W. Haire at the courthouse [Daily Huronite (SD), August 23, 1890, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” and Daily Gazette (Mitchell SD), August 25, 1890, “Page 57 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]. At the convention held in the rink opera house, she served on the committee on enrollment, led singing, shared news about plans for women’s day at the state fair in Aberdeen in September, and was on the committee seeking to speak at the state Republican convention in the subsequent days [Mitchell Capital (SD), August 29, 1890, pg 1pg 4; Madison Daily Leader (SD), August 8, 1890; Wessington Springs Herald (SD), August 15, 1890, September 5, 1890, September 12, 1890; “Page 31 : Program from 1890 South Dakota Equal Suffrage Mass Convention,” “Page 48 : Entire Page,” “Page 49 : Entire Page,” and “Page 50 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

“Extract from Emma Smith DeVoe’s address before the republican convention:
The times are as revolutionary now as they were in 1776 and if the cause for which our forefathers fought was just, then is our cause of equal suffrage in South Dakota just, and if our cause of equal suffrage is not just, then the very foundation of the republic is false, and structure reared thereon, should fall to the ground dishonored and disgraced.”
The Dakota Ruralist, October 4, 1890, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

Although the suffrage vote failed at the polls in November 1890, the S.D.E.S.A. met in Huron to settle accounts, elect officers, and make plans for the next legislature. DeVoe was retained as lecturer/organizer. Afterwards, she wrote an open letter for S.D.E.S.A. titled “We will Never Halt till the Prize is Won,” in which she discussed some reasons for the failure, and what they planned to do differently in future, encouraging people to keep their local clubs active [Madison Daily Leader (SD), November 12, 1890, December 3, 1890; Wessington Springs Herald (SD), November 14, 1890, December 5, 1890; Black Hills Union (Rapid City SD), December 4, 1890].

In 1891, she attended the National American Woman Suffrage Association and spoke on the subject: “The Moral and Political Emergency” before the Picklers were introduced. DeVoe spoke on voting by new immigrants and the injustice of no women on juries, and, with racist language: “…and we are told to stand aside the make way for the marauding savages, who are of more account than we women.  Our appeals are lost in the noise of the war whoop and our political wishes are lost in the confusion attending a ghost dance.” [Anthony/Harper, History of Woman Suffrage, vol. 4, 183; “Page 55 : Program: 1891 National American Woman Suffrage Convention (Page 5),” and The Washington Post (DC), March 1, 1891, “Page 59 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Alexandria Gazette (VA), February 28, 1891; The Critic (Washington DC), February 28, 1891; St. Paul Daily Globe (MN), March 1, 1891; Bismarck Weekly Tribune (ND), March 6, 1891; Washburn Leader (ND), March 7, 1891; et al.; (quote) Evening Star (Washington D.C., February 28, 1891].


Speaking events:

  • December 1889, Hyde County: Chapelle, VanOrder (Seeman school house), Bramhall (December 3), Ayers school house in Hamilton Township (December 4), McIver’s school house in Washington Township (December 5) the neighborhood of John Sarvis, the neighborhood of Pilkington, Holabird, and Highmore. At Van Order, she spoke about women’s exclusion from the jury system and the taxation of their mortgages. She was initially discouraged from going to Holabird, but went anyway and was able to meet with a “good audience” and some of Holabird’s men “expressed themselves as converted to the cause and joined the equal suffrage society.” She organized suffrage clubs at Chapelle, Bramhall, Ayers School House, McIver’s School House, and Holabird. The county convention was held at the courthouse in Highmore, where a quartette sang J.H. DeVoe’s “A Soldier’s Tribute”–that Emma had been singing around the county–and the Highmore band played without charge [“Page 05 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1889: Brown school house in York Township, Hand County [“Page 10 : York Township Suffrage Meeting,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1889, Ree Heights, Hand County: At her meeting at the church in Ree Heights, the veterans present requested that she sing “A Soldier’s Tribute” [Page 10 : Mrs. DeVoe at Ree Heights,” “Page 10 : The Question of the Hour,” and “Page 10 : [Mrs. DeVoe met the ladies],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1889, Greenleaf church, Hand County: At Greenleaf church on Sunday afternoon, for which “the usual Sunday school and gospel service was suspended, and the entire time given to this subject, the pastor fully believing that the cause she advocated, appealed so strongly to the noblest christian sentiment of the church, as to be appropriately considered on the Lord’s day.” [Page 10 : Mrs. DeVoe at Ree Heights,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1889, Beulah, Hand County: DeVoe’s meeting at Beulah was cancelled because of a snow storm, but a group met her at the parsonage the following morning [Page 10 : Equal Suffrage,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • December 26, 1889, Holden: at Star school house for W.C.T.U. [“Page 10 : Holden News,” and “Page 25 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures at Holden],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • December 28, 1889, Burdette, Hand County: At the church. [Page 10 : Equal Suffrage,” and “Page 10 : Enthusiastic Equal Suffrage Meeting,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • DeVoe’s Hand County visits were cut short because of the weather, and a county convention scheduled for January 4 in St. Lawrence was postponed until more preliminary canvassing could be completed. About her time there, she was quoted: “I have organized seven strong Equal Suffrage Societies there, with the best men in the county for officers.  Had it not been for the advice and help of Miss Anthony I could not have done it.” [The Woman’s Tribune (Boston), January 4, 1890 in “Page 09 : Among the Workers” (quote); “Page 10 : Notice,” and The Woman’s Tribune (Boston), January 11, 1890, “Page 25 : [news clipping: letter to Susan B. Anthony],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1890, Ipswich: She lectured “at the rink” [“Page 03: [Handbill for DeVoe Lecture],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1890, Iroquois: lecture at the church. Elder A.L. Shoop challenged anti-suffrage men to come and hear her [Iroquois Times (SD), February 7, 1890 in “Page 26 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures 2/7/1890],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • January 3, 1890, Custer Township, Beadle County: “On the evening of the 3d we were invited to accompany her upon a ten mile trip into Custer township.  Extensive preparations were made to enable us to defy the attacks of jack-frost, wolves, bad roads, etc., which were rewarded by a very pleasant and comfortable ride.” [“Page 26 : Organizing,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 1890, Winthrop school house: [“Page 26 : [fragment: Winthrop Letter],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 6, 1890, Cavour, Beadle County: At Cavour, a regularly-scheduled literary club meeting was adjourned for DeVoe’s lecture. She was accompanied by Mary Elson of Huron. She spoke to “a closely-packed house,” and “the most radically opposed to the enfranchisement of woman were forced to concede that taxation without representation here in Beadle County is the essence of tyranny over the 600 women who pay taxes but are not allowed a word in the distribution” [“Page 26 : Organizing,” “Page 26 : [news clipping: equal suffrage clubs form],” The Woman’s Tribune (Boston), March 15, 1890 in “Page 27 : Beadle County Convention,” and Daily Huronite (SD), February 6, 1890, “Page 65 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 6, 1890, Murray school house, Pearl Creek township, Beadle County: At the school house, twelve miles southeast of Huron [“Page 26 : Organizing,” “Page 26 : [news clipping: equal suffrage clubs form],” and “Page 49 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 1890, Wolsey, Beadle County: At her Wolsey lecture, she told the audience “that South Dakota was to be made the battle ground of woman suffrage and that some of the best speakers on the question in the country had been engaged to stump the state” [Wolsey Journal (SD), February 21, 1890, “Page 25 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures at Wolsey],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Black Hills Union (Rapid City SD), February 28, 1890; Union County Courier (Elk Point SD), February 26, 1890; Sturgis Advertiser (SD), February 27, 1890; et al.].
  • 1890, Bonilla, Beadle County: [“Page 26 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe in Bonille],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 1890, Wessington, Beadle County: At Methodist Episcopal church [Wessington Times (SD), February 22, 1890 in “Page 25 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures at M.E. Church],” and Herald-Democrat, February 20, 1890 in “Page 26 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe speaks on Monday],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 1890, Osceola, Kingsbury County: The audience was 130 people [Osceola Items, February 21, 1890 “Page 25 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures at Osceola],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • February 1890, Huron: The Beadle County convention was held at G.A.R. Kilpatrick Hall. Emma DeVoe served on the committee on resolutions, spoke about her field work for the campaign, and sang “A Soldier’s Tribute” with her husband [Wessington Springs Herald (SD), March 14, 1890; Huron Times (SD), February 28, 1890 in “Page 25 : Beadle County Equal Suffrage Convention,” and The Woman’s Tribune (Boston), March 15, 1890 in “Page 27 : Beadle County Convention,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • March 12, G.A.R. Hall, Athol: [“Page 27 : Among the Workers,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • In March, DeVoe started campaigning in the railroad towns in Spink County. The cited news item was written by her husband and included support for her efforts to tour beyond county seats and larger towns, which is where national speakers had concentrated their efforts [The Woman’s Tribune, June 7, 1890, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • March 13, 1890, M.E. Church, Redfield: When DeVoe first arrived, there had been no arrangements, so a handful of supporters quickly organized a meeting for her second night in town, for which there was reportedly a large audience. DeVoe spoke at the close of revival meeting services. The Observer reported that it was “a logical presentation of facts and figures, interpolated by illustrations from Biblical history.” It “[had] been understood that Redfield was much opposed to the question of equal suffrage but Mrs. DeVoe found workers and helpers there who are a credit to the cause” [“Page 01: Equal Suffrage Meeting,” Dakota Dispatch (Redfield SD), March 15, 1890 in “Page 27 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures, sings],” The Observer (Redfield SD), March 13, 1890 in “Page 27 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe on the warpath],” and The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • March 14, 1890, M.E. Church, Northville: The Methodist minister was “an earnest suffragist” who cut services to let DeVoe speak after his sermon [“Page 27 : Among the Workers,” and “Page 27 : A Pleasing Speaker,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • March 15, 1890, Mellette [“Page 27 : Among the Workers,” and “Page 27 : Understands Her Subject,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • 1890, Ashton [The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • March 17, 1890, Doland: At the church [“Page 27 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe speaks in church]”; The Woman’s Tribune, March 29, 1890 in “Page 28 : [news clipping: Woman’s Tribune letter to the editor]“; The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • 1890, Turton [The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • 1890, Conde [The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • March 21, 1890, Frankfort: The Spink County suffrage convention was held in Frankfort. DeVoe lectured at the M.E. church on the evening before the convention. It was reported that in the discussions during the convention, Mr. Wagner of Frankfort thought that married women should not vote but others should, though “his son was very much troubled about the matter, for he though the young men would stand a poor chance to procure wives if that was the rule” [Redfield Journal, March 14, 1890 in “Page 27 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures at church],” Redfield Journal, March 28, 1890 in “Page 28 : Equal Suffrage Convention,” Frankfort Advocate, March 17, 1890 in “Page 28 : County Convention,” and The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • March 31, 1890, Burgess Hall, Hitchcock, Beadle County: She was billed as a “bright and entertaining speaker and sings also.  Come out Veterans of the G.A.R. and hear her sing her husband’s song entitled, ‘A Soldier’s Tribute to Women.'” An account after the event reported: “We think the Suffrage Association wise in its selection of Mrs. DeVoe as lecturer and organizer; she is the right woman in the right place, pleasant in her manner, enthusiastic, not antagonistic” [“Page 29 : An Interesting Letter,” “Page 32 : Entire Page,” and Page 66, Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 2-4, 1890, Parker: The 2nd District W.C.T.U. convention included a discussion led by DeVoe [“Page 70 : Programme of W.C.T.U. Convention,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 1890, Gettysburg: At Methodist church [Gettysburg Herald (SD), April 9, 1890, “Page 29 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe in Gettysburg],” and “Page 29 : Gettysburg,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 1890, Lebanon: At the Congregational church [Lebanon Observer, “Page 30 : Equal Suffrage,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 1890, Harrold: At Harrold, she spoke to “a well-filled house, but it was noticeable that the liquor element and democrats were not out to hear her” [Harrold Star (SD), April 17, 1890, “Page 29 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe at Harrold],” and The Daily Capital, April 17, 1890 “Page 30 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures 4-17],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 1890, Canning [The Daily Capital, April 17, 1890 “Page 30 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe lectures 4-17],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 17, 1890, Fort Pierre: At Hollenback’s Hall, DeVoe spoke “to a large and attentive audience” [“Page 30 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe at Hollenback’s Hall],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 18, 1890, Okobojo: at the school house [“Page 29 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe in Okobojo],” “Page 29 : Equal Suffrage,” and The Woman’s Tribune, April 26, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 1890, Milford [Sully County Watchman (Onida SD), April 19, 1890].
  • April 1890, Hartford [Sully County Watchman (Onida SD), April 19, 1890].
  • April 1890, Onida: DeVoe spoke at the public school under the auspices of the S.D.E.S.A. and the W.C.T.U. on a Sunday evening “and at an early hour sitting room was at a premium” [The Onida Journal (SD), April 19, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Sully County Watchman (Onida SD), April 19, 1890].
  • April 1890, Milford: At school house No. 2 [“Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 19, 1890, East Pierre: At Grace M.E. Church, DeVoe spoke at 3p.m. where, despite ‘disagreeable’ weather, there were “quite a few people hastily gathered at this impromptu meeting.” A suffrage petition was “signed by nearly every lady present” and Free Press editor J.C. McManima pledged his paper’s support [The Daily Capital, April 19, 1890 “Page 30 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe at M.E. Church],” and Pierre Daily Free Press, April 18, 1890, “Page 30 : [news clipping: Emma Smith DeVoe in Pierre],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 20, 1890, Pierre: DeVoe spoke at the rink opera house, a site selected hastily as a local news editor published a critique “To Pierre Ladies” that when DeVoe arrived to find no arrangements for meeting or entertainment, it appeared that women don’t care about the issue, or that residents of the temporary state capital “are so indifferent to a leading issue.” At the meeting, there were 155 members signed to the association [“Page 30 : To Pierre Ladies,” Pierre Daily Free Press, April 21, 1890, “Page 30 : Equal Suffrage,” “Page 32 : Entire Page,” and The Dakota Ruralist, May 3, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • April 1890, Blunt [The Dakota Ruralist, May 3, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]

“Mrs. Emma DeVoe has done her work nobly and well.  She deserves and has received, from the people of this county, great credit for her pluck and perseverance.”
The Woman’s Tribune, April 5, 1890, “Page 32 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

Through Sully County, “she traveled 166 miles by team—a task which many of us would shrink from”
The Dakota Ruralist, May 3, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

  • May 1890, Lead: At the Methodist Episcopal church [The Belt Daily Herald (Lead City SD), May 8, 1890, “Page 33 : Entire Page,” and Daily Tribune (Lead City SD), May 8, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 8, 1890, Centennial Prairie [The Belt Daily Herald (Lead City SD), May 8, 1890, “Page 33 : Entire Page,” and “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 9, 1890, Central City: At Central City, DeVoe was reportedly given “courteous attention” even from those who disagreed, and spoke about the injustice of men (incl. Indians who abandon tribal relations) having full rights “leaving our American woman… out in the cold” [The Belt Daily Herald (Lead City SD), May 8, 1890, “Page 33 : Entire Page,” and Deadwood Pioneer (SD), May 13, 1890, “Page 34 : Mrs. DeVoe Lectures at Central City,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 10, 1890, Deadwood: DeVoe’s first meeting in Deadwood suffered from poor advertisting, but was reportedly “green fields” compared to the “howling wilderness” of the political arena on the streets. Then, on Saturday, May 10, DeVoe held a ladies’ meeting at M.E. church at 3pm that afternoon and gave a mass meeting at 8pm at the church. The evening meeting featured performance of songs by DeVoe and music of the local metropolitan band [Deadwood Pioneer (SD), May 7, 1890 and May 18, 1890, Tilford Meade County, May 9, 1890, and The Belt Daily Herald (Lead City SD), May 8, 1890, “Page 33 : Entire Page,” and The Pioneer, May 10, 1890 and May 11, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Black Hills Times (Deadwood SD), May 8, 1890].
  • May 11, 1890, Terraville [Lead City, May 8, 1890, “Page 33 : Entire Page,” and Daily Tribune (Lead City SD), May 8, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Spearfish: At Methodist church, DeVoe had a large audience “considering the unpleasantness of the weather and the fact that no time was given for advertising” [Spearfish Register (SD), May 17, 1890, and The Daily Bulletin (Spearfish SD), May 13, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” and “Page 45 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 13, 1890, Minnesela [The Dakota Ruralist (Aberdeen SD), May 24, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” and Butte County Star, May 19, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Whitewood: DeVoe spoke at the Presbyterian church, and an enthusiastic association was organized although the meeting was “not largely attended” [The Whitewood Sentinel (SD), May 16, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” and The Plain Dealer (Whitewood SD), May 17, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Sturgis: At M.E. Church on short notice but had a full house [Sturgis Advertiser (SD), May 15, 1890; and in Page 35 : Entire Page,” and Sturgis Weekly Record (SD), May 19, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Tilford: At M.E. Church, DeVoe did not have a large audience “owing to a mistake in the date of her appointment” [Tilford, May 23, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Allen’s school house, Postville [Tilford, May 23, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, McClure’s Hall, Hill City [Hill City Tin Miner (SD), May 23, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 19, 1890, Hermosa: DeVoe gave a speech on Sunday evening at the Congregational church, where the building was packed and some left because there wasn’t room. She also held a morning meeting at the home of Mrs. Maxson with about ten local women to plan campaign work [Hermosa Pilot (SD), May 23, 1890, and Hermosa Pilot, undated, “Page 37 : Entire Page,” and The Woman’s Tribune, June 21, 1890, “Page 43 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Buffalo Gap [Huron Times, May 31, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Custer: At the Methodist church [Custer, May 24, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Rapid City: DeVoe spoke at the Congregational church with an “audience [that] was not as large as it should have been” and held an afternoon meeting with local women at the Free Reading Room [Rapid City Republican (SD), May 23, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page” (includes stories that she told) and Rapid City, May 23, 1890, and The Daily Journal (Rapid City SD), May 23, 1890, “Page 35 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 24, 1890, Hot Springs: For her Hot Springs talk at the Methodist church, she was promoted to the public on the recommendation of the W.C.T.U.’s Helen Barker and Alice Pickler [Hot Springs Star (SD), May 23, 1890, May 30, 1890; Minnekahta Herald (Hot Springs SD), May 28, 1890, “Page 36 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • May 1890, Oelrichs: At the M.E. Church [Fall River County Republican (Oelrichs SD), May 24, 1890, Page 34 : Entire Page,” and Fall River County Republican (Oelrichs SD), May 31, 1890, and The Advocate (Oelrichs SD), May 31, 1890, “Page 37 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

“She protests against a system of government that places intelligent women on a level with idiots, lunatics, criminals, Indians, and minors.  She regards it an injustice to deprive mothers of American boys and girls of a privilege extended to illiterate and ignorant freedmen and aliens.”
Lead City, May 8, 1890, “Page 33 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

In the press, DeVoe was “loud in praise of her reception in the mining towns.  She asserts that it is a great mistake to think that the miners are a rough set, uneducated, she finding them intelligent, kind-hearted and wide awake to all the reforms of the day”
The Dakota Ruralist, May 31, 1890, “Page 34 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

DeVoe’s Black Hills tour included “lengthy stage rides over the hilly, rough country, and sometimes speaking twice a day…”
The Dakota Ruralist (Aberdeen SD), June 14, 1890, “Page 37 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

  • June 1890, Arlington [Arlington Sun (SD), June 13, 1890, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 11, 1890, Grant Township, Beadle County [Daily Huronite (SD), June 12, 1890, “Page 42 : Entire Page” and “Page 49 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 12, 1890, Lake Preston: At Congregational church [Lake Preston Times (SD), June 13, 1890, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 13, 1890, DeSmet [DeSmet Leader (SD), June 14, 1890, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 16, 1890, Iroquois: DeVoe spoke at the M.E. church “to a good house” with music by a female quartette (who was also engaged to sing at the state fair for Woman’s Day) [The Chief (Iroquois SD), June 17, 1890 and untitled other clipping, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 1890, Esmond: At the M.E. church. The Esmond female quartette provided music for DeVoe “in the west end of the county” [DeSmet Leader (SD), June 21, 1890, and untitled other clipping, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 1890, Manchester: DeVoe spoke to a small audience Saturday afternoon and “a full house” on Sunday evening [“Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 20, 1890, Hecla [Hecla Citizen (SD), June 27, 1890, and The Daily Press, “Page 43 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 21, 1890, Sand Lake picnic: The “love feast” in an artificial grove on the lake shore with farmers and villagers. DeVoe gave an address on suffrage and took a collection. There was also a discussion on “independent political action” and a base ball game [“Page 43 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • June 1890, Frederick: At M.E. church [Frederick Free Press (SD), June 26, 1890, “Page 42 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July/July 1890, Carthage: At M.E. church to a “large audience” [Carthage News (SD), July 4, 1890, “Page 47 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 4, 1890, Scatterwood Lake, northeastern Faulk County: DeVoe gave a suffrage address as part of the holiday program of the Farmers’ Alliance picnic at the lake grove [“Page 43 : Entire Page,” “Page 44 : Entire Page,” andPage 47 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 9, 1890: DeVoe gave a field report for the Beadle County suffrage convention that noted she had organized 29 clubs around the county, 16 had delegates at the convention [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” and “Page 45 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 12, 1890, Rondell: At Farmers’ Alliance rally and picnic, held to ratify support for the Independent Party. She also lectured “in the hall” on Sunday morning. Fifty members were enrolled in the suffrage society organized for Rondell. [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” “Page 45 : Entire Page,” “Page 47 : Entire Page,” and “Page 48 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 14, 1890, Mina [“Page 46 : Appointments,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 14, 1890, Albion [Woman’s Tribune, August 16, “Page 48 : Letter from Mrs. DeVoe,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 14, 1890, Lamberton school house, Richland Township, Edmunds County: The suffrage club that was organized planned to have their first meeting in the hour before the next Farmers’ Alliance meeting [Ipswich Gazette (SD), July 17, 1890, “Page 47 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 15, 1890, Munson [“Page 46 : Appointments,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • July 16 (or 15), 1890, Hempstead school house, Clear Lake Township, Edmunds County [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” and Woman’s Tribune, August 16, “Page 48 : Letter from Mrs. DeVoe,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 16, 1890, Bockman/Barkman school house, Kent Township, Edmunds County [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” and “Page 46 : Appointments,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • July 17, 1890, Powell City: The Welsh settlers at Powell City “gave our lecturer a royal welcome, and made the welkin ring by singing the old songs of Wales” [“Page 46 : Appointments,” and “Page 48 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 18, 1890, Ipswich: The county convention was held “at the rink” [“Page 46 : Appointments,” and Ipswich Gazette (SD), July 24, 1890, “Page 47 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • July 19, 1890, Amherst [“Page 46 : Appointments,” and “Page 48 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 21, 1890, Warner: For DeVoe’s afternoon ladies meeting at Warner, Mrs. Dr. M.J. Cook gave a banquet for 50 ladies at her home, and then DeVoe spoke to a “full to overflowing” M.E. Church that evening. For the banquet, the ladies “all said it was the very first time in all their lives that a banquet had been prepared for them. They had prepared many banquets for men, but this was a new order of business.” Two women who attended had no money to donate, but one donated a jar of butter and another a young pig that were sold [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” “Page 46 : Appointments,” Warner Sun (SD), July 18, 1890 and July 25, 1890, “Page 47 : Entire Page,” and Woman’s Tribune, August 16, and untitled clipping, “Page 48 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 24, 1890, Virgil: At Virgil, DeVoe spoke to an existing club to encourage membership and donations [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” and Dakota Ruralist, August 2, 1890, “Page 47 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 25, 1890, Probasco’s, Kellogg Township [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” and Dakota Ruralist, August 2, 1890, “Page 47 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 26, 1890, Burr Oak Township [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 28 , 1890, Sand Creek [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 28 , 1890, Wolsey: At “the hall” in Wolsey, DeVoe spoke to an existing club to encourage membership, and raised $5 in donations [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” and Wolsey Journal, August 1, 1890, and Dakota Ruralist, August 9, 1890, “Page 48 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • July 31, 1890, sod church [“Page 44 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • August 1, 1890, Logan Township [“Page 44 : Entire Page” and “Page 49 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • August 2, 1890, Richland [“Page 44 : Entire Page” and “Page 49 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

Basic schedule list for August 29-September 30 in “Page 49 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

  • August 29, 1890, Emery: At Congregational church [“Page 50 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • August 30-31, 1890, Alexandria: DeVoe spoke on Saturday and Sunday evenings at the courthouse, and held a women’s meeting at 3p.m. on Saturday afternoon at the courthouse. DeVoe organized a club with 90 members [Alexandria Herald (SD), September 5, 1890, “Page 50 : Entire Page,” and Alexandria Herald (SD), August 29, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 1, 1890, Bridgewater: [Bridgewater Times (SD), September 4, 1890, “Page 50 : Entire Page,” and Huron Independent (SD), September 10, 1890, “Page 57 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 2, 1890, Dolton
  • September 3, 1890, Marion Junction
  • September 4, 1890, Parker
  • September 4, 1890, John Lease school house [“Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 5, 1890, Buchanan school house, Spring Valley, Turner County [“Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 5 (or 6), 1890, Hurley: DeVoe spoke at the opera house and held an afternoon ladies meeting. She talked about the injustice of disenfranchising the “better and purer half of humanity” while giving the vote to “the most depraved Indian.” She took a collection and raised $15 [Turner County Herald (Hurley SD), September 4, 1890, September 11, 1890; Dakota Ruralist, September 20, 1890, “Page 50 : Entire Page,” and “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 6-7, 1890, Lanham
  • September 7, 1890, Norway Township: At school house No. 3 [Dakota Ruralist, September 20, 1890, “Page 50 : Entire Page,” and “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 8, 1890, Canistota
  • September 9, 1890, Salem
  • September 10, 1890, Dover
  • September 11, 1890, Ramsey
  • September 12, 1890, St. Mary’s
  • September 13-14, 1890, Huron
  • September 16-18, 1890, Aberdeen, state fair
  • September 19-21, 1890, Madison, state W.C.T.U. convention
  • September 22, 1890, Ramona
  • September 23, 1890, Oldham
  • September 24, 1890, Erwin
  • September 25, 1890, Bryant: At Baptist church [Bryant Post (SD), September 26, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 26, 1890, Willow Lakes [Bryant Post (SD), September 26, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 29, 1890, Alpena
  • September 30, 1890, Ethan [Davison County Gazette?, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • September 1890, Parker school house [Huron Independent (SD), October 1, 1890, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 2, 1890, Madison: DeVoe spoke at the opera house in Madison, following an Independent party talk by H.L. Loucks, with special music by Stacy, Gilbert and Herrick. The Leader reported that she had “witty illustrations” but her message was “little different from those of the half dozen who came before her” [Madison Daily Leader (SD), October 3, 1890; The Sentinel (Madison SD), October 3, 1890, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 3, 1890, Wentworth [Madison Daily Leader (SD), October 6, 1890; The Sentinel (Madison SD), October 3, 1890, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 4, 1890, Colman [The Sentinel (Madison SD), October 3, 1890, “Page 52 : Entire Page,” and “Page 53 : Equal Suffrage,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 5, 1890, Egan: DeVoe spoke at the school house. An Egan editor printed that “her bearing and the general tone of her talk is in marked contrast with the foreign campaigners who have indeavored to discomfit and overawe the people by their superfluous and highsounding phrases, their scornful tirades on womans abuse and man’s misuse.” Though, the local suffrage club president resigned over his objection to holding a political meeting on the Sabbath. [“Page 53 : Equal Suffrage,” and Egan Express (SD), October 2, 1890, October 9, 1890, and Sioux Falls Press (SD), October 4, 1890, Daily Huronite (SD), October 7, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 6, 1890, Flandreau: At the M.E. church. The evening’s collection was over $15 [“Page 53 : Equal Suffrage,” The Enterprise (Flandreau SD), October 9, 1890, and Flandreau Herald (SD), October 3, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” and Sioux Falls Press (SD), October 7, 1890, “Page 58 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 8, 1890, Centerville: At the Baptist church, with music. The G.A.R., Knights of Labor, Farmers’ Alliance members, and local businessmen were “specially invited” at attend [The Journal (Sioux City IA), ??, “Page 53 : Entire Page,”; and “Page 58 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 11, 1890, Slack school house, Lincoln County [Dakota Farmers’ Leader (SD), October 3, 1890; October 10, 1890].
  • October 12, 1890, Worthing [Dakota Farmers’ Leader (SD), October 3, 1890; October 10, 1890, October 24, 1890].
  • October 12, 1890, Canton [Yankton Press & Dakotan (SD), November 3, 1890, “Page 58 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • October 13, 1890, Pleasant View school, Lincoln County [Dakota Farmers’ Leader (SD), October 3, 1890; October 10, 1890].
  • October 14, 1890, Pioneer school, Lincoln County [Dakota Farmers’ Leader (SD), October 3, 1890; October 10, 1890].
  • October 15, 1890, Brooklyn Township, Lincoln County: At the Millbrook school house on a Wednesday evening. She spoke for two hours. The event was “well advertised and the attendance was very large, the school house, which is one of the largest in the township, being packed full” [Dakota Farmers’ Leader (SD), October 3, 1890, October 31, 1890].
  • October 17, 1890, Alcester: To an overcrowded house [Alcester Journal (SD), October 23, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • October 1890, Sioux Falls: At the Reformed church [Sioux Falls Journal (SD), October 11, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • October 1890, Wall Lake [Sioux Falls Journal (SD), October 11, 1890, “Page 53 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • October 30, 1890, Huron: Emma DeVoe, Julia Nelson, Judge Campbell, H.L. Loucks, and Alonzo Wardall on the speaker program for a Beadle County Independent Rally and Lumber Wagon Parade in Huron. Speeches were held at the opera house. She spoke for half-an-hour on suffrage [Daily Huronite (SD), October 31, 1890, Page 046 : Independent Meeting, Emma Smith DeVoe: 1892-1894 (Scrapbook C), Box 9; “Page 54 : Flyer: Independent Rally,” and “Page 56 : Program: Independent Rally,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]
  • November 1, 1890, Beresford: At Sinclair’s Hall [“Page 039 : [news clipping],” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1892-1894 (Scrapbook C), Box 9; “Page 08 : [handbill advertising Emma S. Devoe lecture at Sinclair’s hall in South Dakota]” (poster), Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].
  • November 3, 1890, Yankton: At the Congregational Church [Yankton Press & Dakotan (SD), November 3, 1890, “Page 58 : Entire Page,” and “Page 59 : Entire Page” (poster advertising the event), Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10].

At Bridgewater — “The boys’ filled the house and gave her a good collection.  Catch an old soldier that’s afraid of a woman!”
Huron Independent (SD), September 10, 1890, “Page 57 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10.

“No, no! Suffragists arouse!  Let us consecrate ourselves fully to a pure devotion to our holy cause of human justice, and press fearlessly on, well knowing that the right must prevail.”
— Emma Smith DeVoe
Quote from Introduction, Rozum and Lahlum, Equality at the Ballot Box, 1.


The DeVoes, with the Cranmers, had also run an Industrial School for Working Girls and Women in Huron, under the W.C.T.U. with courses including writing, reading, vocal music, and penmanship for about forty girls. The school also had an annex for “colored” women (six students) “under the same management.” Out of John’s store, the DeVoes also ran a labor bureau to serve as a job exchange for women and girls [The Union Signal, December 19, 1889, and The Woman’s Journal (Boston MA), January 18, 1890, “Page 66 : Entire Page,” and “Page 75 : Entire Page,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 239-240; Koupal, Our Landlady, 205; “Emma Amelia Cranmer,” Wikipedia]. 


In Huron, the DeVoes lived on Kansas St. [The Union Signal, November 7, 1889, in “Page 09 : South Dakota — Equal Suffrage Work,” Emma Smith DeVoe: 1880-1890 (Scrapbook D), WSL Manuscripts, MS 171, Box 10]. One unsourced note I saw indicated it was 347 Kansas St. In 1891, the DeVoes moved to Harvey, Illinois, where DeVoe continued to be involved with organizing the suffrage movement there, as well as lecturing in Iowa in 1892 and in Kansas in 1893 [Willard and Livermore (1897), 239; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 255].  In 1892, she was treasurer of a Woman’s National Council / Federal Suffrage Association organized at the Sherman House in Chicago [Rock Island Daily Argus (IL), May 11, 1892]. In 1895, she did campaign work for N.A.W.S.A. in Minnesota, Montana, Idaho, and Nevada [Avery, ed., Proceedings of the 28th Annual Convention of NAWSA, held in Washington, D.C., January 23d to 28th, 1896 (Washington DC, 1896), 56.]. In 1898, Anna Simmons corresponded with her about leading the South Dakota campaign that year, but it didn’t work out [Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 256-258]. 

“Give to the mother the fullest freedom, because she cannot bequeath to her child that which she does not possess.”
— Emma Smith DeVoe
Avery, ed., Proceedings of the 28th Annual Convention (Washington DC, 1896), 56.

In 1905, they relocated again to Tacoma, Washington for her husband’s health [“Emma Smith DeVoe,” National Women’s Hall of Fame; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 258].  There, she led the Washington E.S.A. to a successful vote for a woman suffrage state amendment in 1910 and “pioneered what she called the Washington plan of campaign. She advocated using ‘womanly’ ways and one-on-one persuasion” [“Emma Smith DeVoe,” National Women’s Hall of Fame].  During South Dakota’s 1910 campaign, DeVoe sent South Dakota 100 of the Washington suffrage organization’s cookbooks to sell for fundraising [Turner County Herald (Hurley SD), September 1, 1910].

In 1911, she formed the organization of the nonpartisan National Council of Women Voters, and served as its president. It later merged with the National American Woman Suffrage Association to become the League of Women Voters in 1920 [Tacoma Times (WA), August 1, 1912, February 2, 1914; “Emma Smith DeVoe,” National Women’s Hall of Fame].  In 1920, she was chosen as presidential elector by Washington’s Republican state convention and eventually became vice-chair of the state Republican party [“Emma Smith DeVoe,” Wikipedia].  She died in 1927 in Tacoma [“Emma Smith DeVoe,” Find-a-grave.com].

In August-October 1916, she came back to campaign in South Dakota as part of the “Flying Squadron” with other national speakers who canvassed around South Dakota. She represented the National Council of Women Voters and spoke as a voter in Washington state. She first arrived in Deadwood and was given a reception at the Business Club. For suffrage day in Deadwood on August 7, Mabel Rewman (who had worked closely with DeVoe in Washington) hosted a tea and reception for DeVoe, Benedict, and Jones at her home. Near the end of the campaign, DeVoe stayed on in South Dakota, speaking at the W.C.T.U. state convention in Madison, campaigning in Mitchell for Corn Palace week, meeting with the Watertown franchise league, and speaking at a street rally in Spearfish [Daily Deadwood Pioneer-Times (SD), August 2, 1916, August 3, 1916, August 4, 1916, August 4, 1916, August 8, 1916, November 7, 1916; Pierre Weekly Free Press (SD), August 3, 1916; Saturday News (Watertown SD), August 10, 1916, August 24, 1916, October 26, 1916; Madison Daily Leader (SD), August 5, 1916, August 25, 1916, August 29, 1916, August 30, 1916, September 13, 1916; Huron Weekly State Spirit (SD), September 28, 1916; Jones to Pyle, August 31, 1916, RA07474-RA07475, Box 1, Correspondence, 1910, April – 1916, December, Pyle Papers, USD; Effie McCollum Jones, “The South Dakota Campaign,” The Woman Voter 7(10) (October 1919), 15; Ross-Nazzal, “Emma Smith DeVoe,” 261].