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167 Years Ago Today

167 Years Ago Today

On a warm July day in 1848, in a small town of Waterloo in upstate New York, a group of five women gathered around the tea table in Jane Hunt’s parlor to discuss their dissatisfaction with women’s life in general. While all five shared common frustrations of lack of personal, financial, and political freedom, none was […]

Suffragist of the Month, July 2015

Suffragist of the Month, July 2015

Lucy Burns, 1879 – 1966 When the story of the woman suffrage movement is told there is no woman more devoted, who gave more of her personal freedom to the cause than Lucy Burns. She was the first on the picket line, the first and most frequently imprisoned and force-fed, and the brave and creative […]

The Suffrage Wagon Rides Again!

The Suffrage Wagon Rides Again!

Marguerite Kearns grandmother’s Suffrage Wagon is again featured in Long Island’s publication, Newsday, today, in a beautiful two-page article by Bill Bleyer. The wagon, dubbed the Spirit of 1776, was used extensively by Rockville Centre suffragist Edna Kearns, who campaigned vigorously for votes for women. Edna was an editor at the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, and […]

Last week my daughter Jennifer and I visited the Woodlawn Cemetery in Bronx, New York, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. Designated a National Historic Landmark, the Woodlawn Cemetery is a treasure, a green oasis of quiet beauty dropped in the center of one of the busiest places on earth, and the final resting place for over 300,000 people. While there are many famous men buried there – Irving Berlin, Ralph Bunch, Miles Davis – Jennifer and I came to see the graves of the many suffragists who are buried there. We were not disappointed – when it comes to the graves of suffragists Woodlawn holds the golden ticket.

Susan Olsen, Director of Historic Services, guided us to the graves of several of the “rock stars” of the woman suffrage movement – Carrie Chapman Catt, Alva Vanderbilt Belmont, and for me the most exciting – Elizabeth Cady Stanton and other members of her family, including daughter Harriot Stanton Blatch. But there are others as well, Katherine Duer Mackay (Blake), Mary Garret Hay, Catt’s good friend and companion; Ms. Olsen is working to identify more.

The photo below shows Alva Vanderbilt Belmont’s elaborate mausoleum, with his and her graves for her and second husband Oliver Belmont; many said he was the real love of her life. IMG_1537But the monument to Elizabeth Cady Stanton was a bit of a disappointment to us. Obviously her husband Henry died first, so much of the face of the stone tells of his accomplishments. But the placement of her name at the bottom of the monument seems an afterthought. And if one wants to learn about her accomplishments they are relegated to the side, easy to overlook. For a woman who fought almost her entire life to secure political equality for me, my daughters and all women Jennifer and I both agreed that a small cathedral would not be asking too much.
IMG_1538
Woodlawn Cemetery is easy to get to and welcomes visitors. For further information about this fascinating memorial park, log onto www.thewoodlawncemetery.org.

The suffragists will be waiting…

Suffragist of the Month - June, 2015

Suffragist of the Month – June, 2015

Crystal Eastman, 1881 – 1928 Crystal Eastman was born June 25, 1881 into a modest family in Glenora, New York. Her parents, both ordained ministers, held the unusual belief (for the time) in the education of girls as well as boys, and encouraged Crystal to think for herself from a young age. She took this […]

Woman Suffrage Around the World

Woman Suffrage Around the World

My husband and I just returned from a trip to beautiful France, Germany and Switzerland. While we enjoyed the sights, touring historic castles and cathedrals, it will come as no surprise to my readers that I was also curious about the history of the woman suffrage movement in those countries. Although the struggle for woman […]

Suffragist of the Month - May 2015

Suffragist of the Month – May 2015

Katherine Duer Mackay 1878 – 1930 Suffragists were often accused of being unattractive, unfeminine, and terrible mothers. None of these slurs were ever flung at Katherine Duer Mackay, however. She was decidedly one of the most beautiful, gracious and feminine suffrage leaders of the day. When Harriot Stanton Blatch, Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s daughter, took up […]

Suffragist of the Month - April 2015

Suffragist of the Month – April 2015

Rose Schneiderman, 1882 – 1972 “The woman worker needs bread, but she needs roses too,” was Rose Schneiderman’s favorite slogan. Bread was the sustenance, but roses were the joy – recreational facilities, schools, access to health care – anything that would help the working woman improve life for her and her family. Rose Schneiderman was born […]

Suffragist of the Month - March 2015

Suffragist of the Month – March 2015

Kate Malcolm Sheppard,  1847 –  1934 American women certainly had no exclusive claim to the quest for woman suffrage. Women around the world worked tirelessly for political equality, experiencing much the same frustrations and, ultimately successes as our suffragists did. Katherine (Kate) Malcolm was born around March 10, 1847 in Liverpool, England, and moved to New Zealand in […]

Suffrage March a Great Success!

Suffrage March a Great Success!

Our Suffrage Parade to celebrate the beginning of Women’s History Month was a huge success! Sunday, March 1 found an enthusiastic group of men and women parading in Lake Ronkonkoma. Co-sponsered by the Long Island Women Suffrage Association and the Lake Ronkonkoma Heritage Association, the march was a huge success. After parading down Hawkins Road […]

Suffragist of the Month - February 2015

Suffragist of the Month – February 2015

Lavinia Lloyd Dock, 1858 – 1956 Lavinia Lloyd Dock was born Feb. 26, 1858 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Despite a privileged family upbringing, she chose the rigors of training as a nurse at Bellevue Hospital in New York City, and worked as a visiting nurse among the poor. An early advocate of women’s rights, she was arrested for […]

One Hundred Years Ago Today, January 12, 1915

One Hundred Years Ago Today, January 12, 1915

On January 12, 1915 Washington DC was abuzz with both suffrage proponents and opponents, all gathered to witness another historic vote on an amendment to the Constitution granting women the right to vote. Unfortunately, as we know now, they were not successful, but time for the anti-suffragists was running out. The New York Times reported “Suffragists Lose […]

Suffragist of the Month – January, 2015

MAUD WOOD PARK Maud Wood Park was born in Boston January 25, 1871. In her senior year at Radcliffe College she heard a speech by Miss Alice Stone Blackwell, daughter of Lucy Stone, which inspired her to join the Massachusetts Suffrage Association. She and fellow student Inez Haynes Irwin later founded the Equal College Suffrage League, […]