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 - Women and reform topic WASHINGTON - "From...
Women and reform topic WASHINGTON - "From Parlor Parlor to Politics: Women and Reform Reform in America, 1890-1925" 1890-1925" 1890-1925" is a major exhibition on women, social social reform and politicsaround the turn of the century. The new exhibit opens June 28 at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History and continues continues for an indefinite period. Highlighted are some of the major accomplishments of women women active during the Progressive Era (1890-1925), (1890-1925), (1890-1925), a turbulent but Sroductive period in American istory that earned its name from the outpouring of important legislation on social-reform social-reform social-reform issues. issues. Women were driven to political political action, demanding social reform in America in the face of emerging social problems such as overcrowded cities, the rise of poverty, alcoholism, child labor, public health hazards ai.d poor working conditions. "Before they could vote, they changed a nation; before it was genteel to acknowledge ugly conditions, conditions, they forced reform," says Roger G. Kennedy, director of the museum. "This is an exhibition exhibition about heroic persistence, I about sustained endeavor by cou-l cou-l cou-l rageous people over long peri ods, not about sound bites and spasms of conspicuous virtue." On display are more than 700 objects and 275 photographs depicting, depicting, among other things, the women's temperance movement, woman suffrage, education education and the home economics movement, as well as public health, labor reforms, social work and peace activism by women. Among the items on display are temperance banners, buttons and badges; Alice Stone Black-well's Black-well's Black-well's suffrage wagon; a banner, prayer book and school desk belonging belonging to educator Nannie Helen ( Burroughs; Frances Willard's ' traveling tea set; Alice Paul's desk; Susan B. Anthony's red shawl; and Jane Addam's Nobel Peace Prize. A portion of the 4,500-square-foot 4,500-square-foot 4,500-square-foot 4,500-square-foot 4,500-square-foot exhibit will re-create re-create re-create Chicago's Chicago's famous Hull House settlement, settlement, established in 1889 as a community center for social and political action. This section of the exhibition will be used at times for contemporary lectures and discussions, much like the original Hull House, where social work evolved as a profession. The exhibit also examines the formation of a number of wom en's clubs that served as organizational organizational an(j financial bases for reforms, "prom Parlor to Politics" Politics" documents the growth of these groups into such national networks aS the General Federation Federation of women's Clubs, the National National Association of Colored Women an(j the National Council of Jewish Women. "We have focused on activities that politicized women and brought them into public life, says exhibition Curator Edith Mayo, is with the museum's Division of Political History. "Since women could not vote at the nationai level until 1920, these groups formed national networks that acted as alternative political parties for women." A series of discussions, including including a two-day two-day two-day symposium, is planned n conjunction with the opening of "From Parlor to Politics." Politics." The programs will focus on women's history as well as modern modern social issues concerning women. mMp oi

Clipped from
  1. The Daily Times,
  2. 22 Jun 1990, Fri,
  3. Page 41

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