Washingtom, DC and Beatrice, NB: March 30, 1888. Folio, pp. Nicked and soiled at the margins, some worn at the folds, a Very good copy. Item #43668
Clara Dorothy Bewick Colby(5 Aug. 1846 - Sept. 1916), woman's rights activist and publisher, was born in Gloucester, England, the daughter of Thomas Bewick and Clara Willingham. The Bewicks immigrated to the United States in 1849, settling on a farm in Windsor, Wisconsin; Clara and her maternal grandparents joined them in 1865. She entered the University of Wisconsin in 1865, initially enrolling in the "normal department" set up for women. However, with faculty assistance, she pursued the "classical course" designed for men. In 1869 she graduated as valedictorian of Wisconsin's first class of women to be awarded the bachelor of philosophy degree. She remained at the university until 1871, teaching Latin and history and taking graduate classes in French, Greek, and chemistry. Clara married Leonard Wright Colby in June 1871. They moved to Beatrice, Nebraska, where they lived until 1889. For the next four years, owing to Leonard's government appointment, they alternated between Beatrice and Washington, D. C. The couple adopted three children, two of whom survived to adulthood. Their third child was a daughter, an infant Sioux taken from the battle of Wounded Knee where Leonard directed the burial detail there as commander of the Nebraska National Guard. The preferred Sioux spelling of her name is Zintkala Numi, but she was called Zintka her whole life. After 1893 Clara Bewick Colby (as she was known throughout her life) established Washington as her permenant residence. Leonard eventually returned to Nebraska where the Colbys finalized a divorce in 1906 after a separation of ten years. Her specific involvement with woman suffrage began in 1881 with her election as vice president at large for the newly organized Nebraska Woman Suffrage Association. In 1855 she became the group's president, a position she held until 1898.
In 1883 Bewick Colby began her life's central undertaking, the publication of the Woman's Tribune, a suffrage newspaper. For its first year, it was the official publication of the Nebraska Woman Suffrage Association; thereafter, it was maintained solely by Bewick Colby, who performed all tasks from editing to typesetting. Although Susan B. Anthony represented it as the organ of the National Woman Suffrage Association, the paper was never formally affiliated with any national group. However, as the second-longest-running woman suffrage newspaper, it was significant for several reasons. First, Bewick Colby designed the Tribune as a general circulation newspaper, an approach unique among suffrage publishers. For example, in 1898 she received the first war correspondent's pass issued to a woman publisher of a woman's paper. Second, the Tribune was probably the first woman's paper published by a woman. From 27 March to 3 April 1888, while reporting the activities of the International Council of Women, the Tribune achieved a daily circulation of 12,5000 copies. Finally, the Tribune was highly regarded by movement leaders. Elizabeth Cady Stanton considered it "the best suffrage paper ever published" and allowed it to serialize two of her most important works, her autobiography and The Woman's Bible. In 1904 Bewick Colby moved publication of the Tribune to Portland, Oregon, where she lived until the paper ceased in 1909.