Edna Gellhorn (Edna Gellhorn)

Edna Gellhorn

Edna Fischel Gellhorn (December 18, 1878 – September 24, 1970) was an American suffragist and reformer, born in St. Louis.  She attended the Mary Institute and Bryn Mawr College, and was the student president at each, as well as an elected trustee of Bryn Mawr. She graduated from Bryn Mawr in 1900.  She was an officer in the St. Louis and Missouri State Equal Suffrage Leagues from 1910 until the Nineteenth Amendment was passed in 1919.

In 1920 Gellhorn became the first vice president and one of the founders of the National League of Women Voters. She also served on the National League’s board, and as president of the St. Louis and Missouri Leagues. Gellhorn was asked to be the president of the National League by Carrie Chapman Catt, but refused. She was, however, elected to the League’s state and national Rolls of Honor.  Gellhorn was also active in other reforms. She helped found and worked for the United Nations Association, the National Municipal League, and the American Association of University Women, and she served as regional director of the food rationing programs during World War I.

In 1968, Washington University created the Edna Fischel Gellhorn Professorship of Public Affairs, a chair endowed by admirers. At age 79, Gellhorn was selected as Woman of Achievement by the St. Louis Globe-Democrat. She died in St. Louis at the age of 91.  Some of her papers are held as the Edna Gellhorn Papers, held at the University Archives, Department of Special Collections, Washington University Libraries, One Brookings Drive, Campus Box 1061, St. Louis, MO 63130.  The journalist Martha Gellhorn is her daughter.

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  • Edna 1 -


  • December, 18, 1878
  • USA
  • St. Louis, Missouri


  • September, 25, 1970
  • USA
  • St. Louis, Missouri


  • Bellefontaine Cemetery
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • USA

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