MUSSEY, Ellen (Spencer) [1850-1936] -- American educator, reformer
Daughter of Platt R. and Persia (Duty) Spencer;
granddaughter of Caleb Spencer, a Revolutionary soldier,
and a descendant on the maternal side from Moses Warren,
an officer of the war of the Revolution,
and on the paternal side from the English Spencer family.
Her father ¤ was author of the Spencerian system of penmanship.
She attended private academies, was principal of the ladies department.
Spencerian college, D.C., and married in 1871 Gen. Reuben D. Mussey.
She studied law and was associated with her husband in practice in Washington, D.C.,
until his death in 1892, when she continued the practice alone.
She was attorney for several foreign legations; for many national,
patriotic and labor organizations;
was an incorporator of, and attorney for, the American National Red Cross society,
and was appointed a delegate to the
seventh international conference of the society at St. Petersburg, May, 1902.
She was president of the Legion of Loyal Women;
founder and dean of the Washington College of Law,
and professor of the law of torts and of corporation law at the college.
She secured the passage of the bill giving to each parent the same right to their children;
also, giving married women the right to engage in business and control their own earnings,
and secured the first appropriation for a public kindergarten in the District of Columbia.
The degree of LL.M. was conferred on her by Washington College of Law, in 1899.
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A chapter of Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War 1861-1865 named for her.
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