Born in California, Grace Gallatin Seton (1872-1959) was a writer, world traveler and suffragist. During a trip to Europe she met Scottish-born naturalist Ernest Thompson Seton. They married and settled in Greenwich, having one child, Ann – better known to many as the historical fiction writer Anya Seton.
Seton served as vice president of the Connecticut Woman Suffrage Association. In 1914 she designed the state organization’s banner and was in charge of the design of the floats and banners for the Hartford Suffrage Parade.
During World War I, suffragists became divided over the war. Alice Paul and the National Woman’s Party protested President Wilson’s fight to defend democracy in Europe, when women were barred from participating in the U.S. Grace Gallatin Seton, on the other hand, was active in the war effort, organizing a female ambulance unit in France. She also worked actively on the Liberty Loan campaigns and was among the women in Washington, D.C., in 1917 who raised more than $3,000,000 for the war effort.
Following ratification of the 19th Amendment Seton worked as a member of the Republican National Committee. However, because she was married to Ernest Thompson Seton, who was not a naturalized citizen of the U.S., she was not able to vote until 1923. The passage of the Cable Act allowed a woman to keep her American citizenship regardless of the citizenship of her husband.