Election Pennant

Accession Number



SNOW, SubgroupDames/Janes


Miss Ruth Snow, who has been described as a “hustler”and a live wire,” was the first woman in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to hold the office of Clerk of Courts. In August of 1926, she was appointed to the position in an interim capacity when the previous clerk, Alfred Crocker, for whom she worked as an assistant for 18 years, resigned unexpectedly. Performing the duties of clerk came naturally* to Snow and she decided to throw her hat into the race as a candidate for the November elections. From the start, she made it clear that she would not engage in mudslinging against her opponent and even showed him the courtesy of avoiding his town on her campaign trips. Being a woman, Snow did have to work harder to convince voters that she was qualified for the job. However, according to media accounts, Snow was “not afraid to talk straight to men” and “strange as it may seem” Miss Snow reported that “no one has yet spoken disparagingly of her candidacy because she is a woman.” In one instance, Miss Snow approached a group of potential male voters in a village store (who were “evidently discussing either real estate or the approaching county fair”), by asking if they thought a person with 18 years experience in an office should be elected. They agreed that sounded like a qualified candidate. Miss Snow then revealed that she had such a background and was running herself. One man responded, “I admire your pluck and I like your talk. We’ll vote for you, won’t we, boys? The group of men responded with, “Bet your sweet life.” And they must have been true to their word. In November, Miss Snow was officially elected to the office of clerk in the Supreme Judicial and Superior Courts of Barnstable County.

* At the start of the campaign, Miss Snow declared she was more comfortable clerking than barnstorming. She told a reporter, “Even the naturalization oath, which is as long as your arm, figuratively speaking, came much easier to me than the first time I jumped from to car (see SNOW.2.1926/FLIVVER) to talk to a few voters.”


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“Election Pennant,” Institute for Clew Studies, accessed March 24, 2019, http://instituteforclewstudies.com/items/show/15.