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Local History

Phoebe Couzins

Phoebe Couzzins[sic]

“This charming advocate of the rights of her sex entertained a large audience last Friday night at City Hall. Her subject was ‘The Rights of Woman’. She presented her views in a clear and forcible style, with frequent flashes of wit and amusing anecdotes. We would not be so ungallant as to criticize her logic, based as it was on false premises. At the close of the lecture a collection was taken up to defray the expenses.”
Springfield Daily Leader May 3, 1870

Phoebe Couzins, born in St. Louis, was one of the earliest female law graduates in the United States in 1871. When her father died in 1887, Couzins was appointed to fill his position as U.S. Marshal of the Eastern District of Missouri, the first woman to serve in that role. The photograph is used with permission of the State Historical Society of Missouri and is from their Historic Missourians website. (Photograph Collection 012723). For books on other women from Missouri see Show me Missouri women: selected biographies or More than petticoats. Remarkable Missouri women.

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