Ann Gouger Davis

Oct. 14, 1939-May 7, 2024


Ann Gouger Davis, a resident of Crawfordsville from 1966 to 2004, died in her home in East Hampton, New York, on May 7, 2024.

Born Oct. 14, 1939, in New Castle, Pennsylvania, she was the only daughter of Matthew Martin Gouger and Mary Louise (Goehring) Gouger. She grew up on the Gouger family farm in Pennsylvania and on Long Island. She attended high school at Manhasset High School and The Walnut Hill School, where, according to family lore, she was awarded 12 of the 13 awards presented to graduating seniors.

At Vassar College, she was introduced to her roommate’s twin brother, George Humphries Davis, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. After he graduated from Bowdoin and she graduated from Vassar, they were married June 17, 1961. The newlyweds relocated to Illinois and the University of Chicago, where George earned a Ph.D. in American History (1966) and Ann earned an M.A.T. in English (1963). She taught English at Homewood Flossmoor High School in Illinois from 1962 to 1966 before moving to Crawfordsville, where her husband would teach American History at Wabash College for four decades.

During her early years in Crawfordsville, she taught at Purdue University (1966-1968), gave birth to two children, and excelled as a stay-at-home mom. She served on the board of directors of the League of Women Voters (1968-75), Planned Parenthood of Lafayette and the Montgomery County Youth Services Bureau (1971-74). She was a member of the vestry of St John’s Episcopal Church, chair of the Crawfordsville United Fund, and chair of the Crawfordsville Commission on the Status of Women (1979-80).

In 1975, when both of her children were old enough to attend elementary school, she embarked on a second career as a lawyer. She received a J.D. degree (cum laude) from the Indiana University School of Law in Indianapolis in 1978 and was admitted to the bar in the state of Indiana, at a time when there were only a few female members. She practiced law in Indiana for 25 years, first at Vaughan, Vaughan & Layden in Lafayette (1979-1983), then at the Women’s Legal Clinic in Indianapolis (1983-1984), and finally at Holder, Davis, & Smith in Lafayette (1985-2004), where she was a founding partner. Her areas of specialization included family law, civil litigation, and wills and trusts. She was admitted to plead cases before both of the U.S District Courts in Indiana and the Supreme Court of the United States and served as a pro tem (substitute) judge in Tippecanoe County courts.

After retiring in 2004, she relocated, with her husband, to East Hampton. She was a member of the East Hampton Ladies Village Improvement Society and the Ramblers. She was a docent at the Pollock-Krasner House and served a term as president of the LVIS.

She is survived by her husband, George H. Davis of East Hampton; her two children, Matthew M. Davis of Crozet, Virginia, and Catherine P. Davis of New York City; and her four cherished granddaughters, Julia and Emily Davis of Virginia and Ella and Georgia Clifford of New York City.

A memorial service will be held in the sunken garden at the Lady’s Village Improvement Society, 95 Main St., East Hampton, New York 11937 on Sunday, June 23 at noon EST. Arrangements are being made for the memorial service, or some part of it, to be streamed online for the convenience of family and friends who are unable to attend in person. Join the Zoom meeting at Meeting ID: 871 6132 9972. For more information, email Matthew Davis at