Catherine 'Cassie' Stump


Cassie Stump with her friend Ada Carlin in Massachusetts, 1881.

Catherine 'Cassie' Stump was born in Monmouth, Oregon on February 8, 1855, to Catherine Elizabeth and David Stump. David was one of the original land donors and founders to Monmouth University.

Stump attended Christian College and received a Bachelor of Science from the school in 1875.

Both Cassie Stump and her sister, Mary Stump Campbell were pioneers in the literary world of Christian College. Cassie Stump was the co-founder and first president of the Vespertine Society. In an article written by Cassie Stump republished in “Since 1856 … Historical Views of the College at Monmouth,” she states that the literary society was formed after the Christian College trustees “passed a law prohibiting young ladies from participating in the exercises of the literary societies conducted then in the most part by the young gentlemen.” In the article, Stump goes on to explain how the Vespertine Society was determined to not be outdone by the Philosopians or Hesperians — both were literary societies that had existed on the Christian College campus before the trustee vote.

In early 1881, Stump left Oregon to attend Wellesley College in Boston, Massachusetts. While in Boston she visited Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, whom she had befriended. Stump returned to Monmouth to care for her ailing mother and was unable to complete her studies at Wellesley. Upon her return she began teaching instrumental music at her alma mater and worked as a professor at the university until 1886.

In 1913, Stump registered to vote in the first national election since Oregon women achieved suffrage the year before.  

For the majority of her life, Stump lived at the edge of campus in a house that her father built. After her mother's death, she boarded unmarried women professors at her home. Cassie Stump died on January 19, 1941 at the age of 86. 

The house was razed in the 1950's in order to build the new campus library (now the Academic Programs and Support Center).