Activism in Dubuque

After the death of her husband, Robert Alexander Halliburton, in the fall of 1939, Louise returned to Dubuque with a heavy heart. Wishing to reconnect with her hometown and to alleviate her loss she became an active participant in many causes.

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Letter advocating for migrant labor rights.

Human Rights

Louise was often concerned with the physical, social and legal conditions of migrant laborers in Iowa. During the 1940s she reached out to Iowa legislators to campaign for the fair treatment of these laborers many of who faced racism and inadequate living conditions. 

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L. Halliburton working in her garden. Given her love of nature, she made sure to care for a garden throughout her life. 


Louise adopted a vegetarian lifestyle in the 1920s. She practices composting, recycling, organic gardening and other ecological practices decades before the public adopted such activities. Her concerns for the environment also led her to being an active member of the Dubuque Environmental Coordinating Organization where she learned about clean energy initiatives. 

Louise helped to establish the Audubon Society chapter in Dubuque as well as the Mississippi Trails hiking club. 

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L. Halliburton was affectionately refered to as the "Bird lady." In this photograph she holds a Robin. 

Animal Conservation

Many Dubuque residents knew Louise as the "Bird Lady" for her numerous letters to the Telegraph-Herald opposing the hunting of the Mourning Dove. Her love of nature and wildlife also inspired her to donate to and support Greenpeace.