Elizabeth Lowell Putnam
Elizabeth Lowell Putnam was a political activist, philanthropist, and pioneer in prenatal care. A political conservative, Putnam worked against the Child Labor Amendment, the Sheppard-Towner Act (which called for federal protection of maternal health), women's suffrage, the Equal Rights Amendment, and Prohibition. Believing strongly that women's power lay in the private sphere, she was an avid anti-suffragist. She chaired the Education and Organizing Committee of the Women's Anti-Suffrage Association of Massachusetts, the largest committee of that organization. Following the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, however, Putnam became an equally avid Republican, declaring that she was acceding to popular will. In 1920 she was elected president of the electoral college of Massachusetts, becoming the first woman to preside over a state electoral college. For the next 15 years she was very active in politics, holding numerous positions, and died in 1935 after a two-year illness.