May Emerson Carney Middleton

Name: May Emerson Carney Middleton (Middleton)
Birth Date: December 5, 1878
Birth Place: Butlerville, IN
Death Date: October 8, 1975
Death Location: Evanston, IL
Burial Place: Greenlawn Cemetery, Franklin, IN


May Middleton was a founding member and the third president of the League of Women Voters of Evanston. She served from 1924-1926.

May Middleton (1878-1975) played a leading role in many local organizations. She was a charter member of the Evanston League of Voters and its third president, a founder of the Evanston Art Center, and a Board member of the Women’s Club of Evanston, the North Shore Alumni Club of Pi Beta Phi, and other groups. During World War I she was a member of the Advisory Board and Chairman of the State Board of Trustees of the Food for France and Allied Countries Fund and was also active in the Evanston group selling Liberty Loan Bonds. One biographer reported that she edited the newsletter of the local Women’s Republican Club and “was often called Mrs. Republican of the 13th district.”

The Middleton’s longtime home at 2511 Orrington Avenue (a City of Evanston Landmark) is very near the campus of Northwestern University. May Middleton was particularly interested in connecting with foreign students at the university and invited them into her home.

She was married to Edward Middleton, a fellow Franklin College graduate. He was a lawyer and prominent builder and active in professional organizations as well as local Republican politics. His obituary in the Chicago Tribune says “he served as special adviser and director of subsistence homestead and resettlement projects with the Farm Security administration of the Department of Agriculture from 1933 to 1938” and then returned to his Chicago area construction business.

Father: Henry Carney
Mother: Amy Crest
Children: none
Education: Franklin College, graduated in 1899
Years in Evanston: 1911-1975

Sources: Gilman, Agness, and Gertrude, Who's Who in IL: Women Makers of History, 1927; Ancestry; Newspapers from newspapers.ocm; EHC Clipping Files; LWVE Membership Directory