Halloween Edition: Seances and Suffrage

In honor of Halloween, this week’s post takes a look at Spiritualism, a mid-nineteenth and early-twentieth century movement that aimed to establish communication between the living and the dead through spirit mediums.

Don’t forget to join us at the Free Library tonight to learn more about In Her Own Right and the suffrage movement!

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“Designing for Suffrage”
The PACSCL In Her Own Right Project and Craft Activity
October 30, 2019, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Free Library of Philadelphia, Parkway Central, 1901 Vine Street

By design, many of the large-scale woman suffrage events had their own “brand” — white dresses, sashes, rosettes, and pins. Much of the printed material also showcased the sophisticated graphic design skills of the organizers.

PACSCL’s In Her Own Right project gives you a window into this important women’s movement, with a display of original documents and facsimiles featuring these distinctive design elements. You also have an opportunity to make your own suffrage button, customizing the designs shown above and others — or making your own entirely. 

While you’re at the In Her Own Right display, learn more about the project and the century of women’s activism that preceded the ratification of the 19th Amendment, by searching and browsing the project’s growing online collection of manuscripts, diaries, photographs, printed material and other resources.

And be sure to spend time at the more than 20 other displays, activities, and “turbo talks” from other institutions, many of them PACSCL members,  that look at design both in and for Philadelphia-area archival repositories. The Design in the Archives evening is a signature event of Archives Month Philly, an annual celebration of Philadelphia-area archives.

To learn more about PACSCL’s In Her Own Right project, visit the project website or search/browse the online archive.

“There is No Such Thing as Bad Publicity” – Controversies at the Woman’s Medical College of Pennsylvania

From 1867-1972, the Woman’s Medical College of Pennsylvania (WMCP) compiled newspaper clippings scrapbooks, which covered topics relevant to the College, its Hospital (established in 1904), and women in medicine. The Drexel College of Medicine Legacy Center holds 27 of these scrapbook volumes; the first 8 volumes (1867-1920) are digitized for the In Her Own Right website. These scrapbooks uniquely capture the conflicting opinions on women in the medical profession.

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The Rise of the PCLA: Child Labor Reform in Pennsylvania

The women of In Her Own Right fought not only for their own rights, but also for the rights of those less fortunate. Through working with the Pennsylvania Child Labor Committee, Philadelphia-area women were able to lobby for better child labor legislation before they even had the right to vote.

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In Her Own Right at SAA!

On August 6th, 2019, In Her Own Right conducted a working group at the Society of American Archivists annual conference, this year held in Austin, TX. The purpose of the working group was to tease out the many issues involved in documenting women’s history outside mainstream archives, and to attempt to identify best practices for engaging with non-archival communities, their stewards (archivist or layperson), and their records. The resulting conclusions will inform the work of the project as it expands its reach in the NEH phase.

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Labor Day Special: Philadelphia’s Shirtwaist Strike of 1909-1910

Happy Labor Day! Most people are familiar with the Uprising of 20,000 and the tragic New York Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911. Did you know that Philadelphia had a similar fire that led to one of the first massive uprisings of women in the United States?

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Dora Kelly Lewis: Philadelphia’s Voice in the Suffrage Movement

As the country commemorates the centenary of the Nineteenth Amendment, the In Her Own Right Project is highlighting collections related to women’s rights and the long struggle for women’s suffrage. The Historical Society of Pennsylvania is home to the correspondence of Dora Kelly Lewis, a prominent Philadelphian and central figure of the suffrage movement.
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Lucretia Mott: 19th Century Foodie

When I was hired to digitize collections for PACSCL’s In Her Own Right project, I was most excited to work with the Lucretia Mott papers. Mott (1793-1880) was a Quaker minister, abolitionist, social reformer, and one of the igniters of the women’s rights movement, and I was eager to learn more about her. One thing I did not expect was for Lucretia Mott to make me hungry. Though she was a tiny woman, she certainly enjoyed a good meal, and she often included the details of the fare she served or was served in her correspondence. She also touted her cooking skills, which her granddaughter Anna Davis Hallowell confirmed were excellent in the biography she wrote of her grandparents.
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