This paper discusses the historical biography of Laura De Force Gordon. There are certain figures in the history that are memorized for their grace, nature and achievements. Laura de Force is one of those figures who are remembered and still respected for the initial steps she took to aid the humanity and specially the spiritual enlightenment of women of that era…
Since her childhood she observed circumstances that were not too positive towards their family life. The threats of rheumatism and the worsening household conditions, De force’s mother took the responsibility to support her family. She struggled by the handcrafts including needlework and lace making to financially aid the family. The fortunate Laura and her younger sister were, somehow, managed to be educated even in those tough times. The schooling at Erie County and Chautauqua County gave rise to a figure that is still known for her speech and writings (National Cyclopedia of American Biography, 1899).
The family life of Laura De Force was full of miseries and tragedies. The family faced certain difficulties and mental stress as one of her brothers died during 1855. The demise of her brother ended up with her mother’s inclination towards Spiritualism, whereby, she made contact with the dead through trances. Laura, following her mother’s belief, also stepped ahead towards the Spiritualism paradigms. She became much involved with the sought-after speaking process and continued her journey of life. While travelling through Northeast, Dr. Charles H. Gordon came across her. It was in 1862 when they decided to get married and their life changed from the ever stable pace. The couple continued the life and travelled to Nevada and finally to Lodi, California. Laura Gordon changed her path of life from a Spiritualist to a rather socialist (Crabtree 1996). She initiated and promoted the Suffrage Movement, which later on became a part of her identity. She got famous among the suffrage organizations within the state and was highly regarded for the depth of her thoughts and views. She was a great speaker and writer. Her speeches and lectures changed the focus point from evading the secrets of Spiritualism to the topic of Suffrage. Keeping her aims high and diverting her thoughts and ideas towards the Suffrage movement, Laura Gordon addressed in Platt’s Hall remarkably on Feb 19th, 1868. This is known as one of the most crucial speeches by her. During her speech, on that day, she evaded the core values of the movement in San Francisco. Her speech was so well organized and encouraging that within that year she was successful in planning and organizing members for the California Woman’s Suffrage Association. The California Woman’s Suffrage Association was finally founded officially in the beginning of 1870 (Braude, 2001). The foundation of this association spread her name among the people working on suffrage of women. Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony were the two greatest promoters of Laura Gordon after her emergence as an influential figure in the suffrage movement. Laura Gordon had keen interest in journalism. Her interest and inclination towards this field was one the motivating factors that led her to enter in this career. Like any other field, Laura Gordon excelled and over performed in journalism. After Oratory, journalism was easier and more interesting to Laura Gordon. She took part in Stockton Narrow Gauge’s women’s department as a reporter and editor. Her professionalism did not allow her to bind herself in this field only. She stepped ahead and within that year she began issuing a daily newspaper. She is known as the first lady to test her luck in the newspaper publishing business. ‘The Daily Leader’ was her first attempt in this field which later on emerged as her ...
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