Woman of the Century/Adaline Emerson Thompson
THOMPSON, Mrs. Adaline Emerson, educational worker and reformer, born in Rockford, Ill., 13th August. 1859. ADALINE EMERSON THOMPSON. Her father was Ralph Emerson, a son of Prof. Ralph Emerson, of Andover. Mass., who was a cousin of Ralph Waldo Emerson. He was a man of singularly strong character. With discernment he read the signs of the times, and, before it was a usual thing for girls to go to college, when most men were still questioning their fitness for training, either mentally or physically, he decided that his daughters should have the most liberal education that could be obtained. Adaline entered Wellesley College in 1877 and was graduated with honor in 1880. The thesis which she presented on that occasion showed that she possessed literary ability. After graduating she returned to her home in Rockford, Ill., and in 1883 became the wife of Norman Frederick Thompson. The first five years after her marriage were uneventful. Two children and the details of her home occupied her attention. Upon the removal of her household to New York, in 1888, her days of mental activity began. As president of the Woman's Club, of Orange, and also of the New York Assocated Alumnæ, she has won recognition as a leader and presiding officer, but in the College Settlements' Association her organizing force his been most largely expended. Believing that the true way to reach' and help the poor in the large cities is through the intimate personal contact which comes from living among them, and further, that the only way to solve the sociological problems pressing so heavily upon us is through knowledge gained at first-hand by thinking men and women, she has thrown her energy and enthusiasm into this home extension movement- As its president she has carried the association successfully through all the trials and difficulties which beset any new organization. She now lives in East Orange, N. J.