Bruce in Pitt County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
Sallie S. Cotten
women's rights. Helped
organize N.C. Federation
of Women's Clubs, 1902.
Lived one mile south.
Erected 1987 by Division of Archives and History. (Marker Number F-57.)
Location. 35° 40.384′ N, 77° 29.125′ W. Marker is in Bruce, North Carolina, in Pitt County. Marker is at the intersection of State Highway 43 and State Highway 121, on the right when traveling south on State Highway 43. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Greenville NC 27834, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Otter Creek Bridge Skirmish (approx. 2.1 miles away); Voice Of America (approx. 2.1 miles away); Plank Road (approx. 7.3 miles away); Thomas J. Jarvis (approx. 7.3 miles away); a different marker also named Thomas J. Jarvis (approx. 7.4 miles away); Baptist State Convention (approx. 7½ miles away); Greenville (approx. 7.7 miles away); Gen. Allen Hal Turnage (approx. 7.8 miles away).
Regarding Sallie S. Cotten.
Mrs. Cotten’s first twenty-seven years of married life were domestic, devoted to her home and her seven children. As she wrote in a letter to a friend, “No time for anything but stitch, stitch, stitch.” In 1893 their neighbor (and later governor) Elias Carr engineered her appointment as a “lady manager” for North Carolina at the Chicago World’s Fair. There she met women from across the country involved in the growing “woman movement.” The experience made her a public figure and she “never lost her statewide prominence thereafter,” according to her biographer William Stephenson.
In 1902 Mrs. Cotten helped organize the North Carolina Federation of Women’s Clubs, and, for the rest of her life, was devoted primarily to that organization. In her history of the group published in 1925, she opened with these words: “What has been known as the Woman’s Movement was a revolution—bloodless but not purposeless.” Mrs. Cotten also belonged to the United Daughters of the Confederacy, the King’s Daughters, and the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association. She long maintained an interest in the Roanoke colonies and attempted to establish the Virginia Dare School of domestic sciences and occupational training for women. That effort failed, but her interest led to the publication of a long narrative poem about Virginia Dare called The White Doe (1901).
In 1928, at age eighty-two, Mrs. Cotten was introduced to a meeting of women in Boston as the “Julia Ward Howe of the South.” Anne Firor Scott in 1971 wrote that she “exemplified the evolution from the Southern lady of the old school to the new women’s leader who performed a vital role in Southern social and political history.” Dormitories at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and East Carolina University are named for her and, during World War II, a Liberty freighter, commissioned at Wilmington by the North Carolina Shipbuilding Corporation, bore her name. (North Carolina Office of Archives & History — Department of Cultural Resources)
Categories. • Arts, Letters, Music • Civil Rights • Fraternal or Sororal Organizations • Women •
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Credits. This page was last revised on May 7, 2018. This page originally submitted on June 3, 2013, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina. This page has been viewed 346 times since then and 5 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on June 3, 2013, by Mike Stroud of Bluffton, South Carolina.