Woman of the Century/Margaret Eliza Schaffer
SCHAFFER, Miss Margaret Eliza, insurance agent, born near Riverton, Iowa, and April, 1869. Her father was of German parentage, born in Pennsylvania, and while yet a child moved with his parents to Fulton county, Ill. At the early age of seventeen he began to teach school. At the breaking out of the Civil War he entered the Union service. His musical ability was soon recognized, and he was made life-major and brigade leader during his march with Sherman. On his return he was married to Emma Wadsworth, a young woman of literary tastes. They bought a home in Fremont county, Iowa, where in the following year Margaret was born. Until twelve years of age she studied under private tutors. MARGARET ELIZA SCHAFFER. In 1880 her father embarked in the mercantile business in Malvern, Iowa. Entering school there, she pursued her studies diligently, at the same time taking lessons in music of Prof. Willey, a graduate of the Leipzig Conservatory of Music. Later she entered the Coming Academy, Iowa. After leaving the academy, she successfully followed her musical profession till in May, 1890, when the subject of life insurance was brought to her attention. In that line she found a work that was at once uncrowded, pleasant and remunerative. She entered the work with the true missionary spirit. Her task has been to educate the women to urge their husbands to insure, because it means to them contentment and, in the majority of cases, increased comfort and protection against want in case of financial reverses in the husband's business, or declining health. She was one of the first of the few women to venture in that work, and it is claimed she was the first to open an office of her own and make a special department for the insurance of women. On 1st January, 1892, she connected herself with the National Life of Vermont, in Omaha, Neb., after having worked in Omaha a year in another company. The National laid aside the prejudice against admitting women on equal terms with men.