Born: Jan­u­a­ry 8, 1849, Led­yard, Con­nec­ti­cut.

Died: May 21, 1903, Gro­ton, Con­nec­ti­cut.

Buried: Led­yard Un­ion Ce­me­tery, Led­yard, Con­nec­ti­cut.



Ida was the daugh­ter of Ti­mo­thy Whip­ple and Lu­cy Ann Geer, and wife of Eli­jah Bai­ley Ben­ham of Grot­on, Con­nec­ti­cut (mar­ried Apr­il 14, 1869).

She be­gan writ­ing verse at an ear­ly age. She ev­ent­u­al­ly con­trib­ut­ed po­ems to the New York In­de­pen­dent, the Chi­cago Ad­vance, the Youth’s Com­panion, St. Ni­cho­las and other pro­mi­nent per­i­od­i­cals.

At 13, she taught a coun­try school.

Coming from a Quak­er fa­mi­ly, she be­came fa­mil­iar ear­ly with Quak­er-ad­vo­cat­ed re­forms such as tem­per­ance, an­ti-sla­ve­ry, and the abo­li­tion of war. She lec­tured on peace and tem­per­ance.

She was a di­rect­or for the Am­er­i­can Peace So­ci­e­ty, and a mem­ber of the ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee of the Un­i­vers­al Peace Un­ion.

She played a con­spi­cu­ous part in the an­nu­al peace con­ven­tions in Mystic, Con­nec­ti­cut, and held a month­ly peace meet­ing in her own home in Mys­tic.