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Biography Information
Political Campaigns

Laura DeForce Gordon

Birth Date: 1838
Death Date: 1907
State: California
Marital Status: Divorced
General Occupation: Legal System · Writing · Education
Occupation: Attorney; journalist; lecturer
Political Party Activism: Democratic
Social Reform Activism: Labor · Suffrage · Temperance


Laura deForce Gordon was a well known trial lawyer in California ("lady lawyer of San Joaquin County.") Gordon frequently appeared at the state legislature, lobbing various reform causes. In 1871 she was nominated by the Independent party as its candidate for state senator to represent a district of San Joaquin county. She received over 200 votes in the race. In June 1878, Gordon campaigned, with the help of her friend Clara Foltz, to become a delegate to the California constitutional convention to begin in September. She lost but received a few hundred votes and succeeded in her goal, establishing the right of women to participate in constitution making. She attended the convention as a lobbyist for the woman suffrage cause. In 1887 Gordan was nominated, but decline to run for state Attorney General. Gordan was also president of the State Suffrage League and active in suffrage politics nationally and through the western part of the country. She was instrumental in insuring that the California state constitution did not bar women from the state university system, or from any business or profession.

Additional Notes


Laura DeForce Gordon's Campaign for State Senate, 1871

Political Office: State Senate
Election Year: 1871
Political Party: Democratic
Elected: No

Laura DeForce Gordon's Campaign for State Constitutional Convention Delegate, 1878

Political Office: State Constitutional Convention Delegate
Election Year: 1878
Political Party: Democratic
Elected: No

Laura DeForce Gordon's Campaign for State Attorney General, 1887

Political Office: State Attorney General
Election Year: 1887
Political Party: Democratic
Elected: No



Author Title More
Davis, Reda California women; a guide to their politics, 1885-1911 Details
Anthony, Susan B.; Stanton, Elizabeth Cady; Gage, Matilda Joslyn History of woman suffrage, Vol III Details
Babcock, Barbara Woman Lawyer: The Trials of Clara Foltz Details