History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/Adeline M. Swain
ADELINE MORRISON SWAIN was born at Bath, in the State of New Hampshire, May 25, 1820. She acquired an unusually good education and was for many years a teacher of languages in seminaries in Vermont, Ohio and New York. In 1846 she married James Swain and in 1858 they removed to Iowa, locating at Fort Dodge, where Mrs. Swain organized a class of young ladies, giving them instruction in higher English, French, drawing and oil-painting. She also organized a class in botany which studied the flora of northwestern Iowa. Mrs. Swain was elected a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and was the first woman to prepare and read a paper before that body at its meeting in Iowa. She was also an active member of the State Historical Society and a contributor to its collections. She was a valued correspondent of the Entomological Commission appointed to investigate the habits of the Colorado grasshoppers. Mrs. Swain took a deep interest in public affairs and was an active and influential worker in the National Woman's Congress, in the State and National Woman Suffrage Associations and was for several years one of the editors of the Woman's Tribune. At the meeting of the National Suffrage Association at Atlanta, Georgia, she was elected honorary vice-president for life, in recognition of her forty years' work in the cause. In 1883 Mrs. Swain was nominated by the Greenback State Convention of Iowa for Superintendent of Public Instruction, being the first woman nominated for a State office in Iowa. In 1884 she was chosen a delegate from Iowa to the National Convention of that party held at Indianapolis to nominate candidates for President and Vice-President. Mrs. Swain's mature life was largely devoted to educational and reform work in which she long ranked among the ablest in the State. She died at Odin, Illinois, on the 3d of February, 1899.