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Nell Perkins Dawson (January 20, 1870 – April 23, 1923) was a member of the Heterodoxy Club.
Nell Perkins was born in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, the daughter of Henry Addison Perkins (1836–1884) and Sarah Malvina Ambler (1840–1921). She was a nice of Uncle George Perkins, for years noted as publisher of the Sioux City Journal. She was a graduate of the University of Wisconsin. In 1894 she married Allan Dawson (1866–1923), chief editorial writer of The Tribune and The Globe, who at the time was part-owner of the Des Moines Register.
Dawson followed a family tradition by entering the publishing world. Her earliest work appeared in the Des Moines Leader, but she built a twenty-year career as a literary critic with the New York Globe. While in New York, she served on the publicity subcommittee of the Votes for Women Empire State Committee and contributed "The Parade" to The Woman Voter—the official journal of the New York Woman Suffrage Party. Set on May 6, 1912, the date of an important suffrage parade, the play references the detailed orchestration involved in suffrage spectacles and renders something of the rhetorical power they exerted. Though the characters differ in age, disposition, and responsibility, their shared exhilaration in being caught up in the parade underscores their capacity for solidarity. Their excitement provides only half the drama, however; the larger significance of the women's experience—as the parade enters the parlor—remains to be contested after the arrival of antisuffragist "Father."
She died suddenly of cerebral hemorrhage in New York City.
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