Woman of the Century/J. Ellen Horton Foster
FOSTER, Mrs. J. Ellen Horton, temperance worker and lawyer, born in Lowell, Mass., J. ELLEN FOSTER. 3rd November, 1840. She is a daughter of Rev. Jotham Horton, a Methodist preacher. She was educated in Lima, N. Y., and removed to Clinton, La., where, in 1869, she became the wife of E. C. Foster, a lawyer. Mrs. Foster studied law and was. admitted to the bar of the Supreme Court of Iowa in 1872. She was the first woman to practice before that court. At first she practiced alone, but she afterwards formed a partnership with her husband. She followed the legal profession for a number of years. She is widely known as " The Iowa Lawyer." In religion she is a Methodist She joined the temperance workers when the crusade opened, and soon became prominent as a worker. Her home in Clinton was burned, presumably by the enemies of temperance. As a member of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union she was able to give most valuable service as superintendent of the legislative department. Her knowledge of law enabled her to direct wisely all the movement for the adoption of constitutional amendments in the various States, aimed to secure the prohibition of the sale and manufacture of alcoholic liquors. She has written a pamphlet on the legal bearings of the question. She has been exceedingly popular and successful as a lecturer. She is a pronounced suffragist, and she maintains that no organization has the right to pledge the influence of its members to any other organization for any purpose. Her views naturally led her to affiliate with the Non-Partisan League, and she served that body for several years as corresponding secretary, having her office in Boston, Mass. She served her own State union as corresponding secretary and president for years. In 1887 she visited Europe, where she rested and studied the temperance question. In England she addressed great audiences. Returning to the United States, she took part in the International Council of Women in Washington. She has published a number of pamphlets and magazine articles on temperance. Her two daughters died in youth. Two sons make up her family. A part of each year she spends in Washington, D. C.