TERRELL, MARY PETERS YOUNG
TERRELL, MARY PETERS YOUNG (1846–1920). Mary Terrell, teacher, clubwoman, and library advocate, was born in Arkansas on November 29, 1846, the eldest daughter and third child of Dr. Benjamin Franklin and Anne (Peters) Young. In 1847 the family moved to Marshall, Texas, where Mary grew to maturity. In 1864 she graduated from Marshall Masonic Female Institute, a school her father had helped found and for which he served as a trustee. For the next twenty-three years she taught in local schools. She was a devout Presbyterian and became an avid student of the Bible. In 1887, at the age of forty-one, she married Joseph Christopher Terrell, a Fort Worth attorney and a widower. While raising five stepchildren, Mary Terrell became prominent in women's club work in Fort Worth. She was a founder of the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs in 1897 and served as its second president. During her two terms in office (1899–1901), she urged Texas women's clubs to establish local public libraries, and many did. Women's clubs are credited with having founded 70 percent of the state's libraries. Mrs. Terrell led the federation in its successful fight for a Texas library commission and also supported the founding of the Girls' Industrial School in Denton (now Texas Woman's University). After her second term as Texas federation president, she served as a director of the General Federation of Women's Clubs from 1902 to 1904. She also was an organizer and a charter member of the Texas State Library Association (now the Texas Library Associationqv), founded in 1902, and served as its vice president for two terms. In March 1909, Governor Thomas M. Campbell appointed her to the first Texas State Library and Historical Commission, a post she held until 1911. After the death of her husband in 1909 Mary Terrell returned to Marshall, where she spent the remaining eleven years of her life. She died on October 16, 1920, and was buried at East Oakwood Cemetery in Fort Worth.
Image Use Disclaimer
All copyrighted materials included within the Handbook of Texas Online are in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 related to Copyright and “Fair Use” for Non-Profit educational institutions, which permits the Texas State Historical Association (TSHA), to utilize copyrighted materials to further scholarship, education, and inform the public. The TSHA makes every effort to conform to the principles of fair use and to comply with copyright law.
For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.Handbook of Texas Online, Margaret Irby Nichols, "Terrell, Mary Peters Young," accessed May 27, 2016, http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fte36.
Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Get Texas history every day,
with day by day
Each day's email tells a little bit more of the story of Texas and links to our collection of more than 27,000 articles