Laura Sutton Bruce

Randolph Hollingsworth's picture

Project Name:
Kentucky Woman Suffrage

Name of Historic Site:
Lexington Cemetery

Event(s)/Use associated with woman/group/site:
Burial site for Laura Sutton Bruce (1855-1904)



Zip Code:
Street Address: 
833 West Main Street

Associated Organization:
Lexington Cemetery

Years of Importance:
Geographic Location: 
Your Affiliation: 
Kentucky Woman Suffrage Project

Additional Comments:

Burial site of Laura Sutton Bruce (1855? - June 22, 1904) of Lexington, Kentucky, an artist who had studied in Paris and had painted an oil portrait of her friend Laura Clay. The portrait was featured in the summer of 1903 at the Woman's Council tent organized by the Fayette Equal Rights Association for a Chautauqua program in Lexington. Upon her death at the age of 59, Bruce bequeathed some of her estate to the Kentucky Equal Rights Association (Lexington Leader, June 26, 1904). Laura Clay, president of KERA then, held the gift of real estate and stocks in a special fund for use by the National American Woman Suffrage Association. "Miss Clay announced that Miss Laura Bruce had bequeathed $5,000 to her in trust for the National American Woman Suffrage Association.(History of Woman Suffrage... v. 5, 127)" According to historian Paul F. Fuller, Clay was able to invest the gift in a way that brought in additional revenues. She rented out Bruce's house at 718 North Broadway in Lexington and with the rent from that house along with dividends and interest from other investments, Clay was able to pass along to the NAWSA (and League of Women Voters after 1920) nearly $9,000 in total. After 1925, the remaining investments (worth nearly $2,000) were given to the Christ Church (Episcopal) in Lexington for the Laura Sutton Bruce Memorial Fund that would offset the hospital expenses of those unable to pay. Miss Laura Sutton Bruce is buried at the Lexington Cemetery in Section D, Lot 109 next to her parents.

Reference source of Information:
Paul E. Fuller, _Laura Clay and the Woman's Rights Movement_ (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1975): 95-96.