In 1920, just after the 19th Amendment was ratified, Ida M. Walker was one of only 33 women nationwide elected to a state legislature. That year Kansas boasted four woman legislators, the second highest in the country. The three other legislators were Minnie L. Grinstead, Nellie Cline, and Minnie J. Minnich. Walker represented Norton County, District 101, as a Republican in the Kansas House of Representatives. Born in a sod house in Jewell County, Walker attended public schools before becoming a teacher herself. Walker took advantage of the few leadership roles available to women, serving as State President of both the Women's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) and the Federation of Women's Clubs, the State Chairman of the Belgian Relief Fund women's section, and as Sunday School Superintendent in the Methodist Church. Watch Kansas Memory for Walker's papers, which are archived at the Kansas Historical Society--they will be digitized in the coming weeks.
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