Woman of the Century/Emma B. Alrich
ALRICH, Mrs. Emma B., journalist, author and educator, born in Cape May county, N. J., 4th April, 1845. She was the first child of fond parents, and no attempt was made to guard against EMMA B. ALRICH. precocity. At the age of three years a New Testament was given her as a prize for reading its chapters, and at five years she picked blackberries to buy an arithmetic. At twelve years of age she joined the Baptist Church. At that time she began to write for the county paper. At sixteen she taught the summer school at her home. In 1862 she entered the State Normal School in Trenton, N. J., going out for six months in the middle of the course to earn the money for finishing it. She was graduated in June, 1864, as valedictorian of her class. She began to teach in a summer school on the next Monday morning after her graduation. In 1866 she was married to Levi L. Alrich, who had won laurels as one of Baker's Cavalry, or 71st Pennsylvania Regiment. Her first two years of married life they spent in Philadelphia, Pa. In 1876 the Centennial opened up new possibilities and Mr. and Mrs. Alrich moved to the West and settled in Cawker City, Kans. There she again entered the school-room, was the first woman in Mitchell county to take the highest grade certificate, and the only woman who has been superintendent of the city schools. She was a warm supporter of teachers' meetings, church social gatherings, a public library and a woman's club. In 1883 her husband's failing health compelled a change in business. He bought the "Free Press," and changed its name to the "Public Record." All the work of the office has been done by their own family, and each can do every part of it. Besides her journalistic work, she served two years on the board of teachers' examiners. She was one of the forty who organized the National Woman's Relief Corps, one of the three who founded the Woman's Hesperian Library Club, and was the founder of the Kansas Woman's Press Association. Her busy life leaves her but little time for purely literary work.