Lucy Stone

Lucy Stone (1818 - 1893)

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Lucy Stone
Born in West Brookfield, Worcester, Massachusetts, USAmap
Wife of — married in West Brookfield, Massachusettsmap
Died in Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, USAmap
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Profile last modified | Created 9 Feb 2014 | Last significant change: 10 Dec 2018
17:31: Melanie Paul edited a message from Melanie Paul on the page for Lucy Stone (1818-1893). [Thank Melanie for this | 1 thank-you received]
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Categories: Activists and Reformers | American Suffragettes | US Civil Rights Activists | American Anti-Slavery Society | Oberlin College | Massachusetts Notables.

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Lucy Stone was a part of the Suffragette Movement.
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Lucy Stone is Notable.

Lucy Stone (13 Aug 1818 – 19 Oct 1893) was a prominent American orator, abolitionist, and suffragist, and a vocal advocate and organizer promoting rights for women. In 1847, Stone became the first woman from Massachusetts to earn a college degree. She spoke out for women's rights and against slavery at a time when women were discouraged and prevented from public speaking. Stone was known for using her maiden name after marriage, as the custom was for women to take their husband's surname.

Stone's organizational activities for the cause of women's rights yielded tangible gains in the difficult political environment of the 19th century. Stone helped initiate the first National Women's Rights Convention and she supported and sustained it annually, along with a number of other local, state and regional activist conventions. Stone spoke in front of a number of legislative bodies to promote laws giving more rights to women. She assisted in establishing the Woman's National Loyal League to help pass the Thirteenth Amendment and thereby abolish slavery, after which she helped form the American Woman Suffrage Association, which built support for a woman suffrage Constitutional amendment by winning woman suffrage at the state and local levels.

Lucy Stone was born on August 13, 1818, on her family's farm at Coy's Hill in West Brookfield, Massachusetts. She was the eighth of nine children born to Hannah Matthews and Francis Stone; she grew up with three brothers and three sisters, two siblings having died before her own birth. Another member of the Stone household was Sarah Barr, "Aunt Sally" to the children– a sister of Francis Stone who had been abandoned by her husband and left dependent upon her brother. Although farm life was hard work for all and Francis Stone tightly managed the family resources, Lucy remembered her childhood as one of "opulence," the farm producing all the food the family wanted and enough extra to trade for the few store-bought goods they needed.[1]


Lucy Stone was a leader in the women's rights movement in the United States. She was born near West Brookfield, Massachusetts. Her father, a farmer, believed that men were meant to rule over women. He refused to send Lucy to college. With her brother's help, she was able to attend Oberlin College in Ohio by working as a teacher. At that time, Oberlin was the only college to admit women.[2]

In August 1843, just after she turned 25, Stone traveled by train, steamship, and stagecoach to Oberlin College in Ohio, the country's first college to admit both women and African Americans. She entered the college believing that women should vote and assume political office, that women should study the classic professions and that women should be able to speak their minds in a public forum. Oberlin College did not share all of these sentiment.[1]


Henry Blackwell began a two-year courtship of Stone in the summer of 1853. Stone told him she did not wish to marry because she did not want to surrender control over her life and would not assume the legal position occupied by a married woman. Blackwell maintained that despite the law, couples could create a marriage of equal partnership, governed by their mutual agreement.

In 1855 she married Henry B. Blackwell from Cincinnati, who supported her fully in her fight for women's rights and abolition. She decided not to take her husband's name, but to keep her own name and to be called "Mrs. Lucy Stone." Many other women followed her example, for they believed that it was a sign of women's lesser importance to take her husband's name. Henry Blackwell and Lucy Stone helped to found the National Woman's Suffrage Association in 1869, and the Women's Journal a year later. This paper became a tower of strength to the cause for almost half a century. Their daughter, Alice Stone Blackwell, continued her parent's work after their death.[2]

Stone and Blackwell had one daughter, Alice Stone Blackwell, born September 14, 1857, who became a leader of the suffrage movement and wrote the first biography of her mother, Lucy Stone: Pioneer Woman Suffragist.[3] In 1859, while the family was living temporarily in Chicago, Stone miscarried and lost a baby boy.[4]


Lucy Stone's parents belonged to the orthodox Congregational Church, as did Lucy until she went to Oberlin College. The terrific brimstone lectures by Professor Finney did not please Lucy, so she joined the Unitarians who were rational in their religion, antislavery, and also assisted the women's suffrage movement to which Lucy devoted her life. She was a Unitarian the rest of her life.


When she died, her last words were "Make the world better." The funeral was held in the Church of the Disciples in Dorchester, with the Rev. Charles G. Ames conducting the services. Eleven hundred persons filled the historic church to its utmost capacity, as reported by the Christian Register (Unitarian) in November 1893.[2]


  • Lucy stone
  • "United States Census, 1860", database with images, FamilySearch ( : 14 December 2017), Lucy Stone in entry for Henry Blackwell, 1860.
  • "United States Census, 1880," index and images, FamilySearch ( : accessed 24 Aug 2014), Lucy Stone Blackwell in household of Henry B Blackwell, Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, United States; citing sheet 52C, NARA microfilm publication T9.
  • Electronic Oberlin Group. Oberlin: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow... Lucy Stone (1818-1893) accessed 7 Feb 2014

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No known carriers of Lucy's mitochondrial DNA have taken an mtDNA test and no close relatives have taken a 23andMe, AncestryDNA, or Family Tree DNA "Family Finder" test.

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Images: 5
Lucy Stone, before 1840
Lucy Stone, before 1840

Lucy Stone, between 1840-1860
Lucy Stone, between 1840-1860

Lucy Stone, 1881
Lucy Stone, 1881

Engraving of Lucy Stone wearing bloomers, 28 May 1853
Engraving of Lucy Stone wearing bloomers, 28 May 1853

Lucy Stone
Lucy Stone


On 10 Dec 2018 at 15:56 GMT Melanie Paul wrote:

Lucy didn't simply "decide" to not to take her husband's name, she drew up a legal contract that specified keeping her own name.*

Ages ago, before I even knew she existed, I had already adopted her statement "My name is my identity and must not be lost".

* Information I got from "Uppity Women speak their minds" by Vicki Leon.

On 10 Dec 2018 at 12:27 GMT Deb (Lewis) Durham wrote:

This profile does not appear to meet the current criteria for PPP. The PPP was put in place three years ago before the establishment of the current guidelines.

Lucy is 32 degrees from Rosa Parks, 29 degrees from Anne Tichborne and 23 degrees from Victoria of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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