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Jane Addams. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-95722).

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Addams, Jane (06 September 1860–21 May 1935), social reformer and peace activist, was the daughter of John Huy Addams, a businessman and Republican politician, and Sarah Weber. Born on the eve of the Civil War in the small farming community of Cedarville, just outside Freeport, in northern Illinois, she was the youngest of five children, four of whom were girls. Her mother died during pregnancy when Jane was two years old. The Addams family was the wealthiest, most respected family in the community. Jane’s father owned the local grain mill, was president of the Second National Bank of Freeport, had interests in a local railroad and a local insurance company, taught Sunday School, and was active in local Bible societies. A founding member of the Republican party and supporter of ...

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Andrews, Fannie Fern Phillips (25 September 1867–23 January 1950), pacifist and educational reformer, was born in Margaretville, Nova Scotia, the daughter of William Wallace Phillips, a shoemaker, and Anna Maria Brown, a church activist. Andrews grew up in Lynn, Massachusetts; she graduated from Salem Normal School in 1884 and taught school in Lynn between 1884 and 1890. In 1890 she married Edwin G. Andrews, a salesman in Lynn; they had no children. In 1895–1896 Andrews resumed her studies, at the Harvard summer school, and in 1902 she received her A.B. from Radcliffe in education and psychology....

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Bailey, Hannah Clark Johnston (05 July 1839–23 October 1923), philanthropist, reformer, and peace advocate, was born in Cornwall-on-the-Hudson, New York, the daughter of David Johnston, a tanner, and Letitia Clark. In 1853 her father moved the family to Plattekill, New York, where he became a farmer and minister of the Society of Friends (Quakers). She attended public school and a Friends’ boarding school and taught in rural New York from 1858 to 1867. Accompanying a female Quaker preacher on a mission to New England churches, almshouses, and prisons, Bailey met her future husband, Moses Bailey, a fellow Society member and prosperous manufacturer of oil cloth. They were married in 1868 and settled at his Winthrop, Maine, home. They had one child....

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Emily Green Balch Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-114732).

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Balch, Emily Greene (08 January 1867–09 January 1961), peace activist, sociologist, and Nobel Peace Prize winner, was born in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts, the daughter of Francis Vergnies Balch, a lawyer, and Ellen Maria Noyes. She was in the first graduating class at Bryn Mawr College, earning her degree in 1889. After studying privately for a year with sociologist ...

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Ballou, Adin (23 April 1803–05 August 1890), Universalist clergyman, reformer, and founder of Hopedale Community, was born in Cumberland, Rhode Island, the son of Ariel Ballou and Edilda Tower, farmers. A largely self-educated preacher, Ballou’s earliest religious experience was Calvinist in nature, and he later recalled the “very solemnizing effect” of the preaching he heard as a youth. At about age eleven, however, Ballou experienced a religious conversion, and a year later he was baptized into a Christian Connection church that emphasized a more enthusiastic and fundamentalist religiosity. Ballou developed a deep interest in religious matters over the next several years and eventually became a self-proclaimed preacher. At age eighteen, in the autumn of 1821, he was received into the fellowship of the Connecticut Christian Conference, a Christian Connection body. In 1822 he married Abigail Sayles; they had two children before Abigail died in 1829....

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Bartholdt, Richard (02 November 1855–19 March 1932), congressman and newspaper editor, was born in Schleiz, Thuringia, Germany, the son of Gottlob Bartholdt, a liberal forty-eighter (i.e., a supporter of the liberal revolutions in the German states in 1848), and Carolina Louise Wagner. Following early education in the Schleiz Gymnasium, he immigrated in 1872 to Brooklyn, New York, and gained U.S. citizenship. He returned to Germany to study law in 1877–1878. He worked as a typesetter and printer (Brooklyn, Philadelphia, and St. Louis), reporter for the ...

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Edward W. Bok. In the background are, from left to right, Senators George H. Moses, James Reed, and T. H. Caraway. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-103937).

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Bok, Edward William (09 October 1863–09 January 1930), editor, philanthropist, and peace advocate, was born in den Helder, Holland, the son of William John Hidde Bok and Sieke Gertrude van Herwerden, who, having lost their inherited fortune through unwise investments, immigrated to the United States in 1870. They settled in Brooklyn, where Bok and his older brother learned English in public school. With his father at first unable to find steady employment, Bok delivered newspapers, worked in a bakery, and wrote up childrens’ parties for the ...

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Brooke, Abraham (1806–08 March 1867), physician and radical reformer, was born at Sandy Spring, Maryland, the son of Samuel Brooke and Sarah Garrigues, farmers. The Brooke family had been leading Quakers in Maryland for several generations, and Abraham attended Quaker schools at Sandy Spring before entering medical college in Baltimore. In 1829 he married Elizabeth Lukens, a fellow Quaker from Sandy Spring; they had three children. When the Hicksite-Orthodox schism took place among Quakers, the Brookes, like most Maryland Friends, sided with the Hicksite group....

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Ralph Bunche Photograph by Carl Van Vechten, 1951. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-109113).

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Bunche, Ralph Johnson (07 August 1904–09 December 1971), scholar and diplomat, was born in Detroit, Michigan, the son of Fred Bunch, a barber, and Olive Agnes Johnson. His grandmother added an “e” to the family’s last name following a move to Los Angeles, California. Because his family moved frequently, Bunche attended a number of public schools before graduating first in his class from Jefferson High School in Los Angeles in 1922. He majored in political science at the University of California, Southern Branch (now University of California at Los Angeles or UCLA). He graduated summa cum laude and served as class valedictorian in 1927. He continued his studies in political science at Harvard, receiving his M.A. in 1928, then taught at Howard University in Washington, D.C., while working toward his Ph.D. at Harvard. In 1930 he married Ruth Ethel Harris; they had three children. Bunche traveled to Europe and Africa researching his dissertation and received his Ph.D. from Harvard in February 1934....

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Burritt, Elihu (08 December 1810–06 March 1879), reformer, was born in New Britain, Connecticut, the son of Elihu Burritt, a farmer and cobbler, and Elizabeth Hinsdale. Burritt’s mother made the Bible and the religion of John Calvin the basis of the Christian nurture of her ten children. Elihu attended the local district school and showed a marked aptitude for scholarship. After his father’s death in 1827, he apprenticed himself to a local blacksmith and independently continued his studies, particularly in languages....

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Cadbury, Henry Joel (01 December 1883–07 October 1974), New Testament scholar and pacifist, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Joel Cadbury, Jr., a partner in a successful plumbing business, and Anna Kaighn Lowry. The Cadburys were members of a large transatlantic Quaker family, and Henry Cadbury grew up attending Quaker schools. In 1899 he graduated from Penn Charter, in 1903 from Haverford College, and 1904 from Harvard University with a master’s degree in Greek....

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Carrie Chapman Catt Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-28475).

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Catt, Carrie Chapman (09 February 1859–09 March 1947), suffragist leader and peace activist, was born Carrie Clinton Lane in Ripon, Wisconsin, the daughter of Lucius Lane and Maria Clinton, farmers. In 1866 the family moved to a farm outside Charles City, Iowa, and Carrie thereafter identified herself as an Iowan. She was graduated from Iowa State Agricultural College (now Iowa State University) in 1880 with a B.S. She was a feminist long before she knew the word; at thirteen she was indignant when she realized that her mother could not vote in the presidential election. At college she organized a debate on woman suffrage and broke tradition by joining a public-speaking society. After graduation she read law for a year, then taught high school in Mason City, Iowa. She soon became the school’s principal as well as the superintendent of schools. In these posts she developed her organizational and administrative talents. They were the keystones to her success as a leader of women for the next sixty years....

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Clark, Grenville (05 November 1882–13 January 1967), attorney and world government advocate, was born in New York City, the son of Louis Crawford Clark, a wealthy banker, and Marian de Forest Cannon. He attended Pomfret School and then entered Harvard College, where he joined the exclusive Porcellian Club and graduated Phi Beta Kappa in 1903. Three years later, after earning a Harvard law degree, he joined the distinguished New York City law firm of Carter, Ledyard and Milburn, becoming friends with a young fellow clerk, ...

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Cornell, Julien Davies (17 March 1910–02 December 1994), civil liberties attorney and pacifist, was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Edward H. Cornell, a successful Wall Street attorney, and Esther Haviland Cornell, heir to the famous Haviland chinaware fortune. Julien, along with his brother and two sisters, attended the Brooklyn Friends School on Schermerhorn Street. Reared as a member of the Society of Friends (Quakers), he recounted that an important part of his childhood was attending meetings: "On Sundays … during the meeting … we had to turn the pages quietly so as not to disturb worshippers. … [S]ome of the speakers' messages appealed to us, particularly those of Anna Curtis, who had a great stock of interesting stories" (Cornell, ...

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Cousins, Norman (24 June 1915–30 November 1990), author, editor, and peace advocate, was born in Union Hill, New Jersey, the son of Samuel Cousins and Sara Miller, owners of a dry goods store. Soon after his birth the family moved to New York City. In his youth Cousins excelled in English composition and was a fine baseball player. After graduating from Columbia University Teachers College in 1933, he secured an editorial position as an education writer for the ...