The Saginaw County League of Women Voters (LWV) was organized at the Saginaw County Fair on October 25, 1919 in the Saginaw Equal Suffrage Association’s booth. A driving force behind its organization was Mrs. Ida Rust MacPherson of Saginaw, Michigan.
Among the LWV’s many activities were: marking ballots; World Peace; better milk inspection; support of the Child Labor Amendment or Sheppard-Towner Bill; better child care; and education of people about general citizenship, political candidates, and their towns. The LWV published newsletters for the Saginaw chapter and Mich. state chapter. The LWV is still active today on local, state, and national levels. The Saginaw chapter is now called LWV (Saginaw, Mich.). (This information is from Bulletin, Mich. LWV, March 1930, Vol. VIII, No. 3, pp. 1-2 in the collection. )
Born on May 7, 1881, Mrs. Ida Rust Macpherson was a Saginaw native. As a student Ogontz (Delta County, Michigan), she attended suffrage meeting which several national leaders of the Women’s Suffrage Movement attended. In 1912, Anna Howard Shaw spoke in Saginaw about suffrage. Her words prompted Mrs. Macpherson into active service with the movement on a local level beginning that same year. She also served as State Finance Committee Chair (1913-1919).
When Mrs. Carrie Chapman Catt suggested forming a national LWV at the St. Louis Conference of 1919, Mrs. Macpherson immediately worked to establish the local Saginaw County LWV, eventually serving as its chair. She also helped to find financing for the local LWV and worked to accomplish many LWV goals.
In 1927, Mrs. Macpherson’s health forced her to relocate to California. The Saginaw Co. LWV then elected her Honorary President. In California, she became advisor to the newly formed Glendale, California, LWV. She became a national delegate, attending the International Alliance for Suffrage and Equal Citizenship in Berlin in August 1929. Mrs. Macpherson died in April 1973. (This information is from Bulletin, Mich. LWV, March 1930, Vol. VIII, No. 3, pp. 1-2 in the collection and the Social Security Death Index.)