The Library

thelibrary.org Springfield-Greene County Library District Springfield, Missouri
Local History

First Woman Jury

 Greene County women willingly answer jury call
Leader & Press, February 3, 1947

"These 18 Greene County women undoubtedly established a state record today as they answered the county's first call for women to serve on a jury. Not one of them exercised her feminine privilege of avoiding jury duty merely by saying 'I don't want to,' an 'out' provided by the state’s new constitution as it simultaneously admitted women to such service. In St. Louis last summer two-thirds of 300 women in the first group called there, walked out almost in a body when they were told of their 'veto' right.

"This picture was taken this morning in the jury box in division two of circuit court. First row, from left, Mrs. Charles Renshaw, of Ash Grove (seated on arm of chair), Mrs. Velta Buckner, Route 2, Willard, Mrs. Wayne Moore, 1837 North Main, Mrs. Cecil Harman, Ash Grove, Mrs. Nadine Morris, 756 University, Miss Lula Posey, Route 4.

"Second row: Miss Dorothy Blain, 825 Benton, Mrs. Laura Burns, 943 East Locust (who technically became the first woman juror in the county, since she was the first woman to qualify this morning in the panel of 12 who will try Ralph Miller, 31, of Route 1, Willard on charges of stealing chickens at night), Mrs. Albert Meek, 1395 Frisco, Miss Maude Hawkins, 558 East Harrison, Mrs. W. W. Abbott, Walnut Grove, and Mrs. Jo Uzzell, Route 10.

"Third row: Mrs. Isabelia Alderman, Republic, and just behind her in the corner, Mrs. Clarence Ghan of Republic, Mrs. Fred Hulston, Ash Grove, Miss Georgia Killingsworth, Walnut Grove, Mrs. Meri Corbin, Walnut Grove, and Mrs. Dennie Pickel, Rogersville.

"Besides Mrs. Burns, these four also were picked for the jury trying today’s case: Mrs. Morris, Mrs. Meek, Miss Blain, and Mrs. Ghan. Not shown is Mrs. Hazel Thorton, of Route 5."

Find this article at