Lucy Smith Morris

Posted by on Dec 20, 2019 in Inspiration Wall Honorees | Comments Off

Lucy Smith Morris

Lucy Smith MorrisLucy Smith was born in 1850 in Markesan, WI. She was educated at the Musical Academy in Beaver Dam and the Notre Dame Convent, (now Mount Mary College) in Milwaukee. After teaching school for several years, Lucy married Charles Secor Morris, a young entrepreneur of Berlin.

Lucy Smith Morris achieved many great accomplishments. She was a genius in leadership and successfully brought women together to enrich the quality of their lives, while transforming the worlds of culture and reform.

Lucy recognized the potential power of women’s political influence if they organized statewide. Through her efforts, the Wisconsin Federation of Women’s Clubs was founded in October of 1896. Lucy was elected its first president, and held a lifelong passion for the success of this organization.

Second only to her support for the Women’s Club’s success was her interest in the promotion of libraries. During her tenure as President of WFWC, her club members established over 100 libraries around the State of Wisconsin. She was appointed to the Wisconsin Free Library Commission (later named Wisconsin Library Association) in 1896 by Governor Robert LaFollette, and was one of the first women so appointed. Lucy served as its President for 20 years. For her accomplishments in promoting libraries, Lucy was named to the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame in 2018.

Locally, Lucy was involved in several projects. She was instrumental in the movement to start a hospital in Berlin, and she and her husband financed the first manual training and domestic science departments of the Berlin High School. She actively participated in the suffrage movement of the day, and entertained national leaders in her home when they visited the area.

In 1998 a Wisconsin Historical Society marker was placed in Nathan Strong Park honoring Lucy’s accomplishments.

Her life stands out as an example of courage, honesty and kindness and the City of Berlin would be poorer without her contributions.