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Alfred Davis
Phoebe Oxenbold
Eva Davis
John Catley Davis
Mary Street
Thomas Bateman
Charles W. Penrose
Edwin C. Penrose
ECP Missionary Letters
Jabez Carter Hornblower
Jonathan and Ann Carter Hornblower
Joseph Hornblower
Romania Bunell, MD
Lydia Adamson
Lucetta Stratford
Louise Lusty
Margaret Bateman
Nielsine Thompson
Niels Pederson
Alfred Woodland
William Thomas Woodland


           In July of 1869 Mormon Church President Brigham Young stood before the congregation in the Salt Lake Tabernacle and said:  “[W]e have sisters here who, if they had the privilege of studying they would make as good mathematicians as any man.  We believe that women are useful not only to sweep houses, wash dishes and raise babies, but that they should study law . . . or physic . . ."

           Author Claire Noall placed the talk at October Conference 1873 and included the sentence: "The time has come for women to come forth as doctors in these valleys of the mountains.”[1]   

            Perhaps as he spoke Brigham looked down from the podium into the eyes of the former teacher of his children, Romania Bunnell Pratt.  Romania and her husband Parley Parker Pratt, Junior, had been married for fourteen years and had five living children. Romania had a good education for a woman of her time and place.  Still, a thirty-four year old wife and mother with a six-month old baby seemed an unlikely candidate to step forward and ask to travel to the eastern United States to study medicine.  Yet two months later on December 3, 1873 Romania and Parley boarded a train in Salt Lake bound for New York City.

            Several reasons have been put forward for Brigham’s call for women to study medicine and other fields.  The transcontinental railroad line linking East and West, completed in 1869, meant that outsiders (i.e. nonmembers of the Mormon Church, or the Gentiles) would be coming to Utah in greater numbers.  Brigham Young had long encouraged the Mormons to be self-sufficient.  While in the early days of the church members had relied on prayers, blessings and natural remedies for healing, many had died of diseases, starvation, and lack of medical care that had been improving in quality.  Many Mormon women gave birth with the help of midwives who by most accounts did an incredible job in preserving the lives of the mothers and children.  Still, in cases where a doctor was needed, there was a sentiment that for modesty’s sake a woman should be able to be treated by one of her own sex and religious faith. 

            Then too, as the federal government increased efforts to eliminate the practice of polygamy, doctors or medical persons coming into Mormon homes of necessity had to be trustworthy.    Could a male doctor be trusted to keep silent about the fact that many of his patients delivering babies seemed to be on their own, without husbands?  Furthermore, Brigham’s colonization efforts meant that many women lived in rural areas far from the help of even midwives.  Many women and children died for want of adequate care.  Prayers and healing blessings did not stem the tide of deaths.  Reluctantly the leaders of the Utah church recognized the need for trained medical people of their own faith to attend to those in need. 

            In 1849 an Englishwoman, Elizabeth Blackwell, became the first woman in America to earn a medical degree.[2]  American Lydia Fowler followed close behind, becoming a medical doctor in 1850.  Women doctors who had been trained in Europe immigrated to the U.S., including several women converts to Mormonism who traveled to Utah in the 1850s.  Netta Ann Furrer Cardon and Sophie Reusch graduated from medical schools in Geneva and Italy respectively, and worked with the sick in Ogden and St. George.[3]  Vigdis Hold from Iceland was the first practicing physician in the town of Spanish Fork.  Janet Downing Hardy was a graduate of the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.  She had studied under pioneer male obstetrician and first user of chloroform, Sir James Y. Simpson, although she apparently did not practice in Utah.[4]  

Romania Bunnell Pratt became first Mormon woman doctor from Utah to complete her medical degree in the U.S.  Who was this remarkable woman and how did she become a part of the Penrose family history? 


Romania’s childhood and youth 

            Many contributed to Romania’s realization of her goal, but the major factor in her obtaining her medical degree was her mother, Esther.   

            Esther Mendenhall Bunnell recognized that her first child, daughter Esther Romania Salina Bunnell, was an exceptional child.  Esther was ambitious for her daughter—she made certain that this bright young girl had the best education available to her.  Romania was born 8 August 1839 in Washington, Wayne, Indiana to Esther and Luther Bunnell.  Esther joined the Mormon Church when Romania was a small child.  Eventually Luther also became a member and the family moved to Nauvoo in early 1846—just in time to join the exodus from the city on the night of March 1, an experience that made a strong impression on the little girl. 

            Esther’s health was poor and she was expecting a baby, the first addition to the family since Romania had been born almost seven years earlier.  Because of this, rather than move West with the rest of the Latter-day Saints, the Bunnells moved to Iowa where their daughter Josephine was born 2 November 1846.  Two sons were born there:  Luther Ball Bunnell on 23 May 1849 and Isaac Newton Parker Bunnell, 14 August 1850. 

            In order to get the money to take his family to Utah, Luther joined up with the forty-niners and went to California.  He was successful at mining, but unfortunately he contracted typhoid fever and died 29 September 1850, but not before he hid several bags of gold to keep it safe.  While he was away seeking his fortune Esther saw to Romania’s education.  She attended the Western Agricultural School, the Quaker Institute of Ohio, and the Female Seminary of Crawfordsville, Indiana where she studied music, literature and other subjects—she was definitely not the typical frontier girl.[5]  

            Luther’s brother searched for and eventually found the hidden bags of gold and brought them back to Esther.  Against her brother-in-law’s advice she then prepared to travel to Utah.  Esther had noticed that sixteen-year old Romania was attracting too much attention from the local boys.  The family joined the wagon train of Captain John Hindley, arriving in Salt Lake on 3 September 1855. 

            Compared to the difficulties encountered by other trains, this journey was fairly uneventful.  Romania made friend with 20-year old Jane Charters Robinson who reported that the two girls enjoyed walking together.[6]   

            Romania described what she experienced on the prairie:  “The journey across the plains with ox teams was a summer full of pleasure to me; the early morning walks gathering wild flowers, climbing the rugged and oftimes forbidding ills—the pleasant evening gatherings of the young folks by the bright camp fire while sweet songs floated forth on the evening air to gladden the wild and savage ear of the red men or wild beasts as well as our own young hearts.” [7] 

            The family arrived amidst the plague of grasshoppers and threat of famine, when even a bag of gold couldn’t buy a person enough food to live.  Romania was hired as a teacher in the private school Brigham Young held for his children.  The following summer Esther journeyed back to Indiana to obtain the rest of the funds from Luther’s estate.  Upon her return she stopped in St. Louis where she bought a small ebony grand piano that she had brought back to Utah by ox train.  She still had enough money to buy a small home for the family. 

            When Romania was nineteen she married Parley Parker Pratt, Jr. (23 Feb 1859) the son of the late apostle Parley P. Pratt and nephew of Orson Pratt, also an apostle and writer on church subjects.   In 1861 Parley left the pregnant Romania at home with a two-year old child while he answered the call of the church to serve a four-year mission.  The baby boy died shortly after his birth.  Parley and Romania eventually had seven children, five of whom survived.  Their only daughter died a few months short of her second birthday. 

            When Romania heard Brigham speak in Conference, her youngest baby was just six months old.  Medical school may have seemed like an impossible dream at that moment, but together Parley and Romania worked to make it possible.  Esther Bunnell stepped in and volunteered to care for the children.  Parley had been working towards getting his father’s autobiography published and this seemed like the best time to see the project finished.  He sold the family home as well as a farm he had inherited.  Romania sold her piano.  Even son Parley, age 14, volunteered to help by getting a job pushing a broom.  Sons Louis, age 8, Mark age 4, Irwin age 2 and baby Roy remained in the care of Esther Bunnell.  

            Within two months they were ready to board the train.  Imagine the mixed feelings Romania must have experienced when she handed her baby to her mother.  Before she left to face the challenge of medical school, Brigham Young gave her a blessing.   She and Parley spent six weeks in New York proofreading and editing The Autobiography of Parley Parker Pratt.  When the book was ready to go to press, Parley returned to Utah.  Because it was so late in the term, Romania spent the first few weeks observing and studying on her own at the Women’s Medical College, a Quaker-founded school in Philadelphia.  At the end of the spring term she obtained permission to go to New York and enroll in the Bellevue Hospital Medical School as a private student.  These extra few weeks of study and her desire to learn allowed her to keep up with her classmates when she returned to the Women’s College in the fall.  She excelled at dissection.  “The cost of dissecting a cadaver was forty dollars, which was split by a ‘club’ of four girls—two juniors and two freshmen—who worked as a team.”[8]   

            By the end of the spring term the expenses of her schooling had depleted her finances.  Parley had gone to serve another mission in the Southern States and Romania was not willing to ask him for more money.   

            She returned to Salt Lake for the summer.  Upon her arrival she immediately went to her mother’s home, where to her dismay, her two youngest children did not recognize her.  She had been away more than a year.   

            Without any funds to continue her education, she went to Brigham Young with her problem.  He in turned called upon his plural wife Eliza R. Snow to get the Relief Society to find ways to assist her.  “We need her here, and her talents will be of great use to this people.”  The women raised money and accepted donations to finance the remainder of Romania’s education in the knowledge that this was a worthwhile investment that would be well repaid when she returned as a physician. 

            In the fall she returned east to complete two more years of medical school at the Women’s Medical College in Philadelphia.   One of her roommates was Ellis Reynolds Shipp, the second woman to travel outside Utah to get a medical degree.  She began classes that fall.  Romania completed her classes, wrote and defended her thesis, and graduated March 15, 1877 at age 38. Her thesis was “Puerperal Hemorrhage, Its Cause and Cure.”[9] None of her family was there to see her receive her diploma. She remained in Philadelphia to continue her studies of the eye and the ear—she had the distinction of being one of the first physicians to specialize.  

            At the request of a son of Brigham Young, John Young, she went to the Elmira Water cure for a month to observe the methods used in this popular 19th century treatment before returning to Utah.  Her sister Josephine now lived in Indiana and was pregnant, so Romania stayed with her for two more months to deliver the baby and care for her.  She finally arrived home Sept 18, 1877 just a few weeks following the death of Brigham Young on August 29th.  Once again her younger children greeted her cautiously.  Despite her long absence, husband Parley had waited until a few months before she returned to Salt Lake for good before taking a second wife, Brighamine Hansen, in January.   

            Although Romania said that plural marriage made sense to her, she divorced Parley in 1881.  He and Romania had been separated for several years now, and she had grown in knowledge and self-confidence.  She was busy reacquainting herself with her children and establishing a medical practice.  Parley had long suffered with poor health and had struggled to support his family.  He and his second wife began having children and he struggled with his new obligations.  While in Mormon Utah Parley could have taken another wife at any time, perhaps his poor health made it difficult for him to take on the burden of a second family even though his wife was away for several years.  He and Brighamine eventually had eight children together.  


Medicine and Women’s Rights 

            While some have argued that polygamy made it possible for women to pursue professional activities or vocations outside the home because multiple wives could share child care responsibilities, (and this remains to be demonstrated) in Romania’s case the credit for her achievement goes to the medical student herself and to her mother, Esther Bunnell.  

            In 1882, following her divorce, Romania attended a women’s suffrage convention in New York, where she met some of the leaders in the movement.   While there she attended lectures at the Eye and Ear Infirmary.  After returning to Utah she opened an office on Main Street.  She probably performed the first cataract operation in Utah.  Some of her colleagues were unhappy about that, being of the opinion that women doctors should stick to obstetrics and women’s health.  Perhaps they feared the competition Romania offered.  Romania was determined not to let the male MD’s bully or demean her.  Eventually she earned the respect of the Utah medical community.   Other women following in Romania’s footsteps were returning to Utah after completing their medical education, so the need for obstetrics care was not so great as it had been.  She continued as a surgeon and also as an obstetrician.  She also taught classes in obstetrics to train young women as midwives and nurses.  

           In 1870 Utah became the second state or territory to extend suffrage to women.  The leaders of the national suffrage movement greeted this development with mixed reactions, despising polygamy on the one hand but encouraged to see the grant of rights for women.  As a result of this step, many suffrage leaders forged close ties with Mormons active in the struggle for suffrage.[10]  Many Mormon women also became politically active in order to combat legislation that they feared would destroy their families.  The Woman’s Exponent started publishing in 1872, one of three major feminist journals in the country. Romania was a frequent contributor to the Exponent, which was neither directly owned nor controlled by the church, although the Mormon women who published it frequently publicized Relief Society activities.[11]  She also wrote regular series on hygiene for the Young Woman’s Journal.  She was active in the suffrage movement and met many of the leaders. 

            Romania had been one of a group of LDS women who saw the need to have a teaching hospital for training midwives, as well as a place where medical care could be made available members of both sexes who were unable to afford care otherwise. In July 1882 the Deseret Hospital opened its doors. Romania conducted a school of obstetrics there. Midwives trained by Dr. Pratt and Doctors Ellis and Margaret Shipp were the best prepared of any in the state.[12]  The hospital operated on the donations and fund-raising efforts of Relief Society members and volunteer labor.  Romania was a visiting physician and later a resident physician.  The Hospital continued in operation for eleven years, but the time commitment, depleted energy of volunteers and lack of income made the continued operation too great a burden on the participants. 


"The Doctor" Marries Again

             As the federal government increased pressure on the Mormon Church to abandon polygamy, the stress and strain on Mormon families likewise increased as many polygamists faced prison terms or else life hiding out “on the Underground.”  1885 was a tumultuous year for the Penrose family.  Deseret News Editor Charles Penrose was warned that the federal marshal had a warrant for his arrest, so the church sent him to Washington DC and other eastern cities to find ways to prevent passage of the Edmunds-Tucker Act.[13]  Rather than have him return to Utah, the church called him on a short-term mission to England at considerable financial sacrifice to his two families at home.  Furthermore, his wife Lucetta and all except his youngest children were subpoenaed before the grand jury.   

            Lucetta refused to testify, but the children were questioned and the prosecutor was able to get the information he needed.  Charles didn’t learn of this until he arrived in England.  In July his diary indicates that letters between Lucetta and him were dealing with some unnamed martial problem.  In his July 30 diary entry, Charles for the first time mentions writing to “R.B.P.” This certainly had to be Romania Bunnell Pratt.  Late in the year Charles returned to Utah, still keeping a low profile.  He and Romania married 11 Mar 1886.  The marriage was kept secret for several years and Romania kept the name of Pratt.  In December 1889 President Grover Cleveland granted Charles a pardon for his first two marriages, but not the third, which still had not yet been made public.  His role as a lobbyist for statehood and against passage of laws harmful to Mormons, as well as his public occupation as editor of the church newspaper, put Charles at risk for prosecution because of his marriage to Romania.   It seems likely that this was the reason Lucetta sent him “an unkind letter” in July—she, along with Lizzie and their children, were already suffering as a result of Charles having to flee prosecution for being a polygamist. 

            Charles was 54 years old when he married the 46-year old Dr. Pratt.  To put his marriages into perspective, at the time Lucetta was fifty-one and second wife Lizzie, forty-four.   

            Although the 1890 Manifesto stated that the church had ceased to authorize polygamous marriages, many questions remained unanswered.  What was to become of the plural wives and families?  Were Mormon husbands to abandon their families that in many cases had been formed long before the Congress passed these laws?  Some in fact did.[14] 

            The Pratt-Penrose marriage became public knowledge in 1905.  Charles, Editor-in-Chief of the Deseret News, was subpoenaed to testify as an expert witness in church doctrine in the Reed Smoot confirmation hearings in Washington, D.C.    When questioned as to how many wives he had, Charles answered “three,” although technically he could have said two, because Lucetta had died in 1903. That same year Romania added Penrose to her name when she moved her medical office from the Old Constitution building to 9th East and Park Avenue. When the fact of the three marriages reached Utah, the Salt Lake Tribune had a merry time castigating Charles for getting a pardon from President Cleveland for his first two wives while keeping quiet about Romania. 

            Christine Croft Waters describes the Pratt-Penrose marriage:  “During the busy years after their marriage when Romania had a heavy medical practice in addition to her writing and teaching and when Charles was required to spend many hours on church business, they still managed time together.  Charles was a storyteller and mimic; people were quickly made to feel at ease in his presence and soon joined in the laughter of a joke.  Romania’s temperament was sober, and she would often merely smile as others joined Charles in a hearty laugh.  Their difference in temperament, however, did not prevent them from enjoying each other’s company; their personalities complemented each other.  They loved to attend the theater and travel together.  They always treated each other with respect and fondness.”[15]  

            Romania seemed a good match for Charles in terms of intellect, thirst for knowledge and energy level.  Because of her activities in teaching and women’s suffrage she was an experienced public speaker, traveler and comfortable in a public role.  She also served as general secretary general secretary of the Relief Society and she belonged to two literary clubs:  The Press Club and the Reapers.  Both sought to train writers for publication and newspaper work.   

            In 1905 the leaders of the church called Charles to be an apostle.  (He had to give up editorship of the Deseret News to serve in his new calling.)  In 1906 he was appointed president of the European Mission.  He took Romania to Europe with him, which caused some ill feelings among members of Lizzie’s family.  Lizzie was described as being a talented but quiet person who, although she was a beautiful singer who performed in public, despised public speaking.[16]  From a practical point of view, Romania with her energy and public speaking experience, as well as suffragist activities, made an ideal companion for Charles during his years as Mission President. 

            Charles and Romania, whom he called “the Doctor” in his letters and diaries, had a busy schedule traveling to the different European missions, speaking in public and writing.  Romania organized local Relief Societies and conducted the meetings.  

            When the Penroses arrived in England in 1907 Relief Societies functioned only in Leicester, Norwich and Liverpool.   In one year Romania organized thirty-six societies.  By the time she left in 1911 she had organized fourteen more.  Without her leadership, however, many of the groups ceased to function.[17]  

            Much prejudice existed against Mormons in England.  The press accused elderly elders of stealing hundreds of English girls and carrying them onto ships on “wife hunting crusades.”[18]  Meetings that were scheduled at a large hall occasionally had to be cancelled because of the press accusations had stirred up feelings against the Mormons. 

            Charles, now in his mid-70’s still possessed great energy.  The Penroses also attended the theater, always a favorite Penrose activity, as well as museums, galleries and parks.  In a letter to his daughter Lucile Penrose Brown, dated Aug.  20th, 1909, Charles wrote: 

I have been on the trip of my life.  I have had a great many journeys, but none like the latest.  Traveled by train through Denmark and Norway as far as there was a railroad, and then by steamboat about 1400 miles farther to the north.  Preached to the people at several points beyond the Artic Circle, viewed the midnight sun, came back through Lapland, Sweden, Germany, Holland, etc., and arrived here OK.  I have neither time nor space to write about it, but will have to tell you a few things concerning it when I get home.  But I do not know when that will be . . . The Dr. was pleased to hear from you and says she will write as soon as she can.[19] 

            On June 15, 1907, the International Woman’s Suffrage Alliance convened in Amsterdam. Utah’s governor John Cutler appointed Romania the state’s official delegate to the congress.  Charles, long an advocate of woman’s suffrage, accompanied her to Holland.    Romania spoke to the congress, giving “particulars of the practical working and results of woman’s suffrage.”  Her remarks were delivered in clear, concise sentences so as to be heard by all in the vast assembly hall, evoking much applause. [20]  

            She attended another conference the following year.  After retuning home she continued to travel to conferences with Charles.   Dr. Penrose reopened her practice but closed it in 1912—she was too busy to keep up with the medical field.              

            In an article written earlier for The Young Woman’s Journal (in 1890) Romania said:  “In a nutshell our duties as suffragists are to inform ourselves and instruct each other in the science of government, to interest all our friends in the movement, and convert our fathers, brothers and husband to the fact that we can understand and wield an intelligent power in politics, and still preside wisely and gracefully at home.”[21] 

            “Why not let capacity and ability be the test of eligibility and not sex?    

             “Knowledge feeds and fattens on itself . . . it is good to become self-sustaining and have a complete knowledge of some branch of work . . .[A woman] must work her way up to the position she desires to fill in life [keeping in mind that] her mission as a mother is a sacred one.”[22] 


Dr. Penrose—the Woman

             Busy, ambitious, educated, but what kind of person was she?  A long time friend, Susa Young Gates, described Romania in 1901:  “[She is] a wonderful woman.  Not because she has done anything impossible to be done by other women, but because becoming a doctor able to severe a limb, or take out an eye, now delivering a woman, then attending with gentlest care the sick bed of some poor old man at the hospital, yet with it all she has a home on another street where she keeps a corner warm and cozy for mother and her unmarried boys; also is she a woman with religious duties devolving upon her shoulders, and with it all she is the same sweet, quiet-voiced, gentle lady that my childish memory so vividly produces.  She is loved and honored by all who have the pleasure of her acquaintance and their name is legion.”[23]   

            Despite the stern realities of medical practice, Romania had a strong romantic element in her makeup that wasn’t diminished by time and experience.  In Europe she delighted in travel on the beautiful Rhine where the shored on either side “are dotted with towns and villages and castles, man old and ruined, built in times of long ago, having each a legend weird, romantic and mysterious.”[24]  

            She loved to dress well, and had fancy hats with lots of flowers, elaborate blouses with sequins, beads and passamentary,  (a type of trimming usually stitched onto lapels and sleeves of jackets or blouses.)[25]  Also, even though she wore a nice coat, she wouldn’t hesitate to take it off and give it to a poor woman suffering from want and cold. 

            Once again back in Salt Lake, Romania moved into the home she shared with Charles at 1175 South Ninth East in Salt Lake.  Here they hosted family gatherings and Romania greeted her step-grandchildren and grandchildren when they came to visit.  They attended the Salt Lake Theater, enjoyed Saltair, and traveled to the Chicago World’s Fair and California.  

            According to his grandchildren, Charles Penrose divided his time between the different homes of his wives.  Dixie Penrose Lloyd remembered that he came home for lunch at Lizzie’s house nearly every single day.  The children lived just a few houses away.   

            Charles was called to the First Presidency in 1911.  He served as Second and then First Counselor to Presidents Joseph F. Smith and Heber J.  Grant until Charles’ long life ended at age 93 in 1925.  Romania gradually lost her eyesight in her last few years, dying 9 November 1932 at age 93.   

Susan W. Howard        May 28, 2007



 Claudia L. Bushman, Ed.  Mormon Sisters:  Women in Early Utah, Utah State University Press, Logan, Utah, 1976, 1997.  The 1997 edition of Mormon Sisters includes an updated reading list of books on Mormon women and a bibliography of Mormon novels, pp. 263-281. 

 Vicky Burgess-Olson, Ed, Sister Saints, Brigham Young University Press, 1978.  “Romania P. Penrose” by Christine Croft Waters.   

Kenneth Godfrey, Charles W. Penrose: His Life and Thought (available at Utah Historical Society Library.) 

Claire Noall, Guardians of the Hearth: Utah’s Pioneer Midwives and Women Doctors, Horizon Publishers, Bountiful Utah, 1974.  

Colleen Whitley, Ed, Worth Their Salt, Too, More Notable but often Unnoted Women of Utah, Utah State University Press, Logan, Utah, 2000.  “Esther Romania Bunnell Pratt Penrose (1839-1932): An Uphill Climb” by Shana Montgomery. 

Additional sources on women in Utah and Mormon history: 

Rebecca Bartholomew, Audacious Women, Early British Mormon Immigrants, Signature Books, Salt Lake City, 1997. 

Kenneth W. Godfrey, Audrey M. Godfrey, Jill Mulvay Derr, Women’s Voices, An Untold History of the Latter-day Saints 1830-1900, Deseret Book, Salt Lake City, 1982. 

Patricia Lyn Scott and Linda Thatcher, eds, Women in Utah History, Paradigm or Paradox, Utah State University Press, Logan, Utah, 2005.



[1] Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 13:61 (July 18, 1869). Claire Noall, Guardians of the Hearth: Utah’s Pioneer Midwives and Women Doctors, Horizon Publishers, Bountiful Utah, 1974, p 104-5. 

Claudia Bushman found no talk by Brigham Young recorded in either the Journal of Discourses or the Deseret News.   Claudia L. Bushman, Ed.  Mormon Sisters:  Women in Early Utah, Utah State University Press, Logan 1976, 1997, p. 65.

 [2]Colleen Whitley, Ed, Worth Their Salt, Too, More Notable but often Unnoted Women of Utah, Utah State University Press, Logan, Utah, 2000.  “Esther Romania Bunnell Pratt Penrose (1839-1932): An Uphill Climb” by Shana Montgomery.

[4][4] Women of the “Mormon” Church, a pamphlet in my possession, p. 32. 

[5] Whitley, Worth Their Salt, Too, p 102.

[7] Vicky Burgess-Olson, Ed, Sister Saints, Brigham Young University Press, 1978.  “Romania P. Penrose” by Christine Croft Waters, p 345.  Waters quotes Memoir of Romania B. Pratt, M.D. located in Historical Department, LDS Church Archives.

 [8] Burgess-Olson, Sister Saints, p. 348.

 [9] Whitley, Worth Their Salt, Too, p. 34.

 [10] Claudia L. Bushman, Ed.  Mormon Sisters:  Women in Early Utah, Utah State University Press, Logan 1976, 1997, p xviii.

[11] Ibid. p. 180.

[12] Burgess-Olson, Mormon Sisters, p. 58.

[13] The 1887 Edmunds Tucker Act abolished women’s suffrage in Utah—Congress apparently under the belief that Mormon women only voted as instructed by their husbands. Suffrage was reinstated when Utah at last entered the Union in 1896—the third state to provide female suffrage.  Burgess-Olson, Mormon Sisters, pp 167-8, 170.

[14] Ibid, pp. 143 – 150.

 [15]Waters, Sister Saints, p. 353-4.

[16] Mrs. Frank Penrose, (Ruth McQuarrie Penrose) “Louise Elizabeth Lusty Penrose,” written for Daughters of the Utah Pioneers, 1933.

[17] Rebecca Bartholomew, Audacious Women: Early British Mormon Immigrants, Signature Books, Salt Lake City, 1995, p. 117.

[18] Kenneth Godfrey, Charles W. Penrose: His Life and Thought, (unpublished manuscript available at Utah Historical Society Library) pp. 367-8.

[19] Charles W. Penrose to Lucile Penrose Brown, Aug 1909.

[20] Charles Penrose’ report of Romania’s speech was published in the Millennial Star, June 25 1908, quoted by Kenneth Godfrey, p 392.

[21] Burgess-Olson, Sister Saints, p 351, quoting Women’s Exponent, 9 (June 1, 1879): 5.

[22] Ibid.  Quote from Women’s Exponent 18(August 15, 1890): 331.

 [23] Whitley, Worth Their Salt, Too, p. 38, quote on p. 38.

[24] Burgess-Olson, Sister Saints, p 355.

[25] Sister Saints, p 356-7, interview w/granddaughters. 



Jump to Chapters

Romania's Childhood and Youth

Medicine and Women's Rights

"The Doctor" Marries Again

Dr. Penrose - The Woman



Her Vital Records

Her Descendents