The Long Island Woman Suffrage Centennial Conference held yesterday, November 5, was a huge success. Over forty people – teachers, historians, members of the League of Women Voters, and those just interested in celebrating the triumph of woman suffrage – met at the Walt Whitman Birthplace Center in Huntington Station to listen to speakers, share some delicious food, and make plans to celebrate the centennial next year.
Speakers included historian Natalie Naylor; author and Professor Brooke Kroeger; teacher Katherine Manning; LWV past-president Arlene Hinkemeyer; Margaret Fuller scholar Michael Barnett; and President of the Lake Ronkonkoma Heritage Association, Ellyn Okvist. Professor Ann Becker from SUNY Empire State College was there to help register participants, and Jack Petrash took care of the food. It was a wonderful day, and we hope participants took home some ideas and inspiration that will encourage them to continue planning with their own organizations.
The Walt Whitman Birthplace Center graciously offered participants guided tours of the house Walt Whitman was born in, and the lovely grounds provided a calm and gracious atmosphere for discussion and exchange of ideas.
We thank Lauren Kushnick of the New York Council for the Humanities (now called Humanities New York) for attending the conference, and offering the generous funding that made the conference possible.
Photograph: Back row, L to R: Ann Becker; Katherine Manning; Ellyn Okvist; Antonia Petrash; Brooke Kroeger; Lauren Kushnick; Michael Barnett. Front row, L to R: Natalie Naylor; Arlene Hinkemeyer. Many thanks to Brooke Kroeger for the photos.