Woman of the Century/Ellen Douglas Morris
MORRIS, Miss Ellen Douglas, temperance worker, born in Petersburg, Ill , 9th March, 1846. Her father was a Kentuckian, a descendant of the Virginia families, Deakins and Morris. Her mother ELLEN DOUGLAS MORRIS. was of German descent from Wagoner and Wurtzbaugh. Mr. Morris was an intimate personal friend of Abraham Lincoln. He received an offer of a position under the great martyr's administration, but declined. He early espoused the cause of the oppressed and was always interested in public welfare. Miss Morris was educated in a seminary for girls under direction of the Presbyterian Church of Petersburg. She afterwards attended the public schools and was finally graduated from Rockford Seminary, Ill. From 1872 to 1885 she taught in the public schools of Illinois and Missouri, but left the school-room for work in the wider educational field of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union. In Savannah, Mo., where she attended the fourth district convention of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, the local union was dying because it had no leader. She had attended that convention to look on. Reared according to the straightest sect of the Presbyterians, she never dreamed of opening her mouth in the church. The State president believed she saw a latent power and reserve force in the quiet looker-on, and said to the local union, "Make that woman your president." After great entreaty on their part, and great quaking on hers, that was done. The next year saw her president of the district, which she quickly made the banner district of the State. When a State secretary was needed. Miss Morris was almost unanimously chosen and installed at headquarters. Her success in every position she held may be attributed to the careful attention she gives to details and the exact faithfulness of her service. She makes her home in Kansas City. Mo.