Woman of the Century/Charity Rusk Craig
CRAIG, Mrs. Charity Rusk, national president of the Woman's Relief Corps, was born in Morgan county. Ohio, about 1851, and went with her parents to Wisconsin when about three years of age. Her father is Jeremiah M. Rusk, ex-governor of Wisconsin and a member of President Harrison's cabinet. Her mother's maiden name was Mary Martin, the present wife of the secretary of agriculture being her step-mother. At the age of thirteen years Charily Rusk entered a Catholic school. St. Clare Academy, where she remained for one year. She then entered a private school in Madison, Wis., and from that went to the University of Wisconsin, where she was graduated and afterward continued Latin and literature. She has had systematic studies every year since she left school, not neglecting them even during the four years spent in Washington, D. C., when her father was a member of Congress, and he had a brilliant social career. In 1875 she became the wife of a classical student of the Wisconsin University, Elmer H. Craig. They spent a year in Milwaukee, Wis., and a year in Boston, Mass. Mr. Craig was connected with the United States Pension Department. Resigning his position in order to connect himself with the banking firm of Lindeman & Rusk, he moved to Viroqua, Wis. where Mrs. Craig has since been the center of a coterie of distinguished people. In Viroqua is the Rusk homestead, which in summer is always sought by the Secretary of Agriculture and his family and more intimate friends. Mrs. Craig, after having long been quite prominently identified with various local charities and conspicuously interested in women's organizations, became a charter member of the Woman's Relief Corps, auxiliary to the Grand Army of the Republic. She was first president of CHARITY RUSK CRAIG. the corps in Viroqua, then president of the State department, and was finally elected the national president. While serving as department president, she visited many places in the State for the purpose of awakening the interest of the Woman's Relief Corps and the G. A. R. in the Veterans' Home in Waupaca. Wis. As national president she consolidated the work and introduced a new system of accounts, which was more successful. She was instrumental in extending the work into the new States, and laid the foundations for a wide increase of membership. She is a model presiding officer, conducting the deliberations of a large convention with grace and dignity. She admits that she likes to talk to bodies of women.