Born in St. Louis, Missouri on April 16, 1881, Alice Corbin attended the University of Chicago, and in 1898 published a collection of poetry The Linnet Songs. In 1904 she rented a studio in the Academy of Fine Arts in Chicago, where she met her future husband, William Penhallow Henderson, painter, architect and furniture designer, who was a teacher at the Academy. They married on October 14, 1905.
In 1912 her second collection of poems, The Spinning Woman of the Sky, was published, and she became assistant editor to Harriet Monroe at Poetry Magazine. The Henderson's moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1916, after she was diagnosed with tuberculosis. She continued working on Poetry Magazine by long distance until 1922.
Alice Corbin Henderson and her husband were active in the civil rights of Native Americans. She published Red Earth, Poems of New Mexico in 1920 and The Turquoise Trail, an Anthology of New Mexico Poetry in 1928. In 1937 William Penhallow Henderson designed what is now called the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian in the form of a traditional Navajo hogan and Alice Corbin Henderson was curator of the museum.
The couple had one child, daughter Alice, who was born in 1907 and also became a painter.
Alice Corbin Henderson died on July 18, 1949.