- Category : Politics-Labor-unions
- Type : GP
- Profile : 2/4 - Hermit / Opportunist
- Definition : Split - Large
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Service 3
American educator and writer; a temperance activist who helped found the Women’s Christian Temperance Union in 1879. She was an avid promoter of women’s rights and heartily campaigned for equal pay for equal work as well as for the eight-hour workday. She proved to be an expert lobbyist and was a popular speaker who was seen as both magnetic and sympathetic.
The middle child of three born to Josiah and Mary Willard, her family moved first to Ohio, then to a farm in Wisconsin where she spent most of her childhood. Even as a child, it was evident that Frances was a leader, whether at play or at school. In 1858 the family moved to Evanston, Illinois where her older brother Oliver enrolled at Garrett Biblical Institute, and Frances and her sister Mary attended Northwestern Female College. After graduation, she taught briefly before becoming president of Evanston College for Ladies in 1871. Two years later, she became the first Dean of Women at Northwestern.
In 1874, Willard, always an idealist, left her promising career in education to devote herself fully to the temperance crusade. In 1879 she became the second National President of the Temperance Union, a post she held for the remainder of her life.
In 1859 Frances fell ill after an intense period of study. Appointed valedictorian of her graduating class, she received her diploma in bed. While visiting New York City prior to sailing for England in early 1898, Willard was taken ill, and she died there on 2/17/1898.