Tag Archives: Suffrage Wagon News Channel

Suffrage Summer reading & July news notes

 Edward Henry Potthast (1857 - 1927)  Detail At the Seaside

SUMMER READING:

During the dog days of summer, curl up in a hammock under a tree or take time at the beach for summer reading. Need a women’s suffrage related list for summer reading? Here’s a bibliography by Margaret E. Gers that will point you in the direction of a good book related to women’s rights and the suffrage movement that will get you started at home or on the beach. Image: Edward Henry Potthast (American artist, 1857-1927)  Detail – At the Seaside.

SUFFRAGE NEWS WRAPUP: August 26, 2015 is the 95th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Watch for the August 8th special program at Suffrage Wagon Cafe that celebrates this important occasion. First two episodes from Season 1 of “Suffrage Storytelling.” Story of the 4th of July co-conspirators. Fresh corn is in the markets straight from the fields. Find out a great way to cook it from Suffrage Wagon Cooking School.

Three audio podcast series: “Trouble Brewing in Seneca Falls”; “Playing Politics with the President”; and “The Night of Terror.” Video highlights from Suffrage Wagon News Channel. Stay in touch with what’s happening with suffrage centennial news, events and celebrations, whether you’re interested in past state suffrage centennials, upcoming, or the 2020 suffrage centennial in the U.S. Voting rights are as important today as they were at the turn of the 20th century.

News & views of the women’s suffrage movement on Vimeo.

WATCH THE VIDEO ON SUFFRAGE WAGONFollow Suffrage Wagon News Channel on Facebook and Twitter. Quarterly newsletters just by signing up. Suffrage Wagon News Channel has a video platform on Vimeo

Follow SuffrageCentennials.com for news and views about upcoming suffrage centennials. “Choose it and Use it” is a video reminding us of how the past is linked to what we do today and its impact on the future.

Episode 2 of “Suffrage Storytelling”: How Bess got in even more trouble!

Season 1 of “Suffrage Storytelling” reveals the lives of young women in 1903 from on Vimeo.

Whenever Edna Buckman could, she took the train to center city Philadelphia to meet her best friend Bess at the Market Street teahouse. Bess, the rebel, loved telling Edna stories after they took their seats and ordered from the menu. Edna especially liked hearing Bess talk about George Sand, the French woman novelist who wore men’s clothes and adored attention from her many lovers, both women and men.

When Bess strolled down Market Street, she showed Edna how she imagined George Sand walked with a cocky swagger. Bess insisted that Sand made fun of men on their high horses, right to their faces. Edna believed Sand felt entitled to do whatever she pleased because she traveled in aristocratic creative circles and could get away with being different.

“People like us can’t turn into George Sand. It will only come back to haunt us,” Edna said. “Who cares anyway?” Bess asked, throwing up her hands and glancing around at the other teahouse patrons who couldn’t hear or understand their conversation. Bess could be blunt when explaining her problems to her best friend.

MR. WEISS DIDN’T MINCE WORDS ABOUT HIS DAUGHTER’S BEHAVIOR

Mrs. Weiss had been horrified after daughter Bess delivered a tirade about women’s second-class roles at home at the Sunday dinner table in front of all the relatives. This is why Mrs. Weiss supported Philip in his plan to take Bess out of the pool of young single women by marrying her. Philip, an old friend of the Weiss family, had been like a distant cousin to Bess. She’d grown up seeing him at the homes of family and friends on special occasions. Of all the eligible young men in Germantown, Philip couldn’t be considered the best prospect for marriage, but he wasn’t the worst either.

“Philip’s nice, but I’d rather train to be a teacher than get married,” Bess said.

“Maybe there’s a special arrangement for a man and woman to agree on. Family, yes. And freedom too,” Edna suggested.

“Philip’s too much of a traditional man,” Bess responded as the two women ordered another round of oolong tea.

THE BOOK THAT GOT BESS IN TROUBLE AT HOME

The day of their meeting at the Market Street teahouse, concern about Bess and her parents took up most of the conversation. Not long before, Bess got in trouble after her mother found Mary Wollstonecraft’s controversial 1798 book, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman under the bedroom mattress. Bess had borrowed the work from the city library and read it twice. Then she wrapped it in paper, tied it with string, and passed it around among her classmates at school. This was bad enough when her father found out. But when Bess didn’t show any interest in marrying Philip, her parents lowered the boom and confined Bess to her room after school and weekends for a month.

Mr. Weiss wasn’t supportive of his daughter’s plan to become a teacher. He believed higher education beyond high school would be wasted on a young woman. Mr. Weiss emphasized that he wouldn’t pay a cent for his daughter’s advanced education. He was furious that the school Bess attended with Edna, Friends Central in Philadelphia, had exposed Bess to unconventional ideas. In his opinion, women were created by God to be subordinate to men, and the Bible said so. Quakers like Edna’s family believed that boys and girls, men and women, were equal under the eyes of heaven, something Mr. Weiss didn’t know when he caved into pressure from his daughter that she get a high school education.

“WOMEN SHOULD STAY IN THEIR PLACE,” MR. WEISS SAID!

The Weiss family weren’t Quakers, but they lived in a Germantown neighborhood in Philadelphia with Quakers like the Buckman family, people they liked. When Bess decided she wanted to attend a Quaker secondary school with Edna, the idea didn’t seem so out of the ordinary to her father. Mrs. Weiss believed some education made young women better wives. Overall, Mrs. Weiss agreed with her husband’s position and lectured Bess about how men functioned best in their “sphere” of the larger world. Women’s special qualities of purity and morality qualified them for their own realm of responsibility back at home with the family, Mrs. Weiss added.

If Bess became argumentative, her father made his position clear: “Women should stay in their place.” Her mother called politics a “dirty business” because she believed women could be contaminated by too many thoughts about voting. Correcting the stain created by men in society could be addressed by women without a change in the law to extend voting rights. Mrs. Weiss called this “municipal housekeeping,” or community reform work, the highest form of work suitable for women’s attention.

BESS AND EDNA ARGUED ABOUT MARRIAGE

“Marriage is a bad deal for women,” Bess emphasized in her teahouse talk with Edna as they finished the last crumbs of the scones on their plates. “I’m holding out to meet the special man who will love and support me,” Edna responded.

Bess didn’t comment. Being an outsider who questioned the world as it was couldn’t have been easy for Bess when even her best friend Edna didn’t embrace all her ideas. Several school chums of Bess and Edna agreed with society’s prevailing view that politics were corrupt and women had enough to do caring for family affairs without adding more to their responsibilities.

With each passing year, however, ideas about women’s roles were changing as more Friends’ Central women graduates enrolled in the few colleges and universities open to them. Some of these young women believed that since patriarchy constituted the devil they knew, women voting could turn out to be they devil they didn’t know. If Bess and Edna examined these issues in their own lives, they weren’t alone in struggling with a fundamental issue facing their generation: To what extent would they put themselves on the line to be free? Bess represented a hard liner. Edna hoped to find a middle way.

EDNA BELIEVED LUCRETIA AND JAMES MOTT HAD WORKED OUT EQUAL PARTNERSHIP IN THEIR MARRIAGE

Bess identified with radically-minded women such as suffrage activist Susan B. Anthony who didn’t mind being called a “war horse,” “battleaxe,” and “unsexed.” Anthony believed that women’s freedom was more important than worrying about being called nasty names. Words like war horse and unsexed were used often by men like Mr. Weiss to label women who supported social equality and freedom. Bess described herself as a restless “New Woman,” a category of individuals who had no intention of finding self fulfillment within the limitations of “true womanhood” and marriage.

Only Lucretia Mott’s husband, James Mott, represented one of the few examples Edna found of an ideal Quaker man who could be himself and yet uphold his partner’s dignity and right to a full expression of power in the affairs of the material world. In Edna’s mind, the Motts had demonstrated the potential of equal partnership at the Seneca Falls Convention in 1848 when both participated fully in the landmark women’s rights convention. In 1903, Edna hadn’t met Wilmer Kearns yet. After she did, the couple met at the Market Street teahouse as they got to know each other better. Teahouses represented a refuge, not only for Edna, Bess and Wilmer, but for many young people of their generation.

STORY RESOURCES: GET OUT THE WIKIPEDIA:  George Sand. Germantown. Lucretia Mott. Friends’ Central. Quaker. Seneca Falls Convention of 1848. Mary Wollstonecraft. Susan B. Anthony. James Mott.

Suffrage Wagon CafeFollow Suffrage Wagon News Channel on Facebook and Twitter. Quarterly newsletters just by signing up. Suffrage Wagon News Channel has a video platform on Vimeo

Follow SuffrageCentennials.com for news and views about upcoming suffrage centennials. “Choose it and Use it” is a video reminding us of how the past is linked to what we do today and its impact on the future.

The book that got Bess in trouble: Women’s suffrage storytelling special!

WATCH THE VIDEO ON SUFFRAGE WAGON

Suffrage Storytelling is how we reach women voters, young voters, teachers, students & American history fans! on Vimeo.

SUFFRAGE WAGON CAFE PROGRAM on Suffrage Storytelling by Marguerite Kearns, your cafe host.

On the street where Edna grew up in Philadelphia, her best friend Bess became an outsider compared to most of the other young women interested in marriage and starting a family at the turn of the 20th century. Bess insisted on remaining single because of the limited rights for married women. This caused considerable distress for Bess because she loved men and romance and fashionable dresses. But Bess drew the line in terms of what she’d have to sacrifice in terms of her freedom. And so in her mid teens Bess announced to family and friends that although she invited love and romance into her life, she drew the line at marriage.

MR. WEISS WANTED HIS DAUGHTER BESS TO CHOOSE MARRIAGE, NOT FREEDOM

In the larger world, Bess wasn’t alone. Many young women like Bess longed for choices and opportunities. Increasing numbers of them, like Bess, were in a position to receive an education paid for by their fathers. Mr. Weiss wanted his daughter to be the best possible wife for a man. This included becoming a clever conversationalist, someone skilled in household management, music and art –all of the skills and opportunities that could be acquired with a proper education. And so at home, Mr. Weiss caved into pressure from his wife and daughter for Bess to attend high school, an opportunity denied to most young women of that generation.

BESS RAIDED THE PUBLIC LIBRARY SHELVES FOR BOOKS BY WOMEN WRITERS

Suffrage Storytelling features tale about how Bess got in trouble with her parents! on Vimeo.

When Bess attended high school with her best friend Edna, Bess raided the public library shelves and borrowed books from teachers. She read radical women writers such as Mary Wollstonecraft, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Margaret Fuller. Bess also heard stories about Lucretia Mott who turned the heads of old Philadelphia fogies with her radical abolitionist organizing. Many men quaked in their boots when hearing about the ways in which Lucretia Mott and her husband James Mott practiced equality in their marriage relationship. The word got around about how James played an essential role at the 1848 women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York.

YOUNG WOMEN LIKE BESS WANTED TO LIVE A FULL LIFE & THIS GOT BESS IN TROUBLE

Young women like Bess traveled to New York City to witness for themselves the outrageous bells of Greenwich Village who strutted and pranced and showed off their liberated views about women’s equality and freedom. To her father’s dismay and regret, Bess turned out to be exactly what her father despised: an independent thinker, someone committed to remaining single and spending all her free time looking for cracks in the family’s armored existence. All of this came to a head when Mrs. Weiss found the book, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft under Bess’ mattress in her bedroom.

WHAT HAPPENED WHEN WILMER KEARNS ENTERED THE PICTURE . . .

Young Edna Buckman followed in the footsteps of her best friend Bess and announced her intention not to marry. But this resolve was eroded when she met Wilmer Kearns at an art exhibit in Philadelphia. We’ll find out about how this disagreement about marriage impacted the friendship of Bess and Edna on “Suffrage Storytelling.” The ideas of Mary Wollstonecraft and other women writers weren’t taught in school during my youth. Today I find it fascinating to discover the impact they had on my grandmother Edna and other young women like Bess, as well as the previous generation of Lucretia Mott, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and many others.

COMING SOON: THE BOOK THAT GOT BESS IN DEEP TROUBLE WITH HER PARENTS. You’ll be able to experience the book yourself on audio.
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Suffrage Storytelling series to be launched at Suffrage Wagon Cafe on July 8, 2015

Watch the Video

Suffrage Wagon Cafe is introducing its women’s suffrage storytelling series on July 8, 2015. Are you subscribed? This long-awaited series links story to facts. People who follow the Suffrage Wagon love the details and how the cafe is opening its doors. Meet your friends at the Suffrage Wagon Cafe.

Check out past story videos and start following the adventures of Edna Buckman Kearns and Wilmer Kearns. Teachers and students who follow the suffrage wagon tell us that they love the facts best when delivered with story. And Bess is a rebel girl, someone who challenges her best friend Edna Buckman who’s determined to become an activist in the women’s suffrage movement. Bess views herself as an outsider, and she’s headed out into the world as a free independent woman. No marriage for Bess. But Edna had romance on her mind.

Links to Suffrage Wagon News Channel‘s updates and announcements: Our second year of telling the story of the July 4th co-conspirators. National award for “Spirit of 1776″ music video, plus other video highlights for women voters. Path through History weekend in NYS includes programs on women’s rights. Women’s history myth and free ebook, “Jailed for Freedom” by Doris Stevens. June special program from Suffrage Wagon Cafe about the perks of visiting Seneca Falls, NY. Get prepared for the upcoming “Suffragette” film from the UK by checking out the BBC series, “Shoulder to Shoulder.”

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Women’s suffrage movement news: Features, events, and programs!

Women’s suffrage news notes wrap up on Vimeo.

NEWS NOTES: WOMEN’S SUFFRAGE MOVEMENT EVENTS AND PROGRAMS:

If you know a woman — current or historic– whose life demonstrates the 2016 theme, “Working to Make a More Perfect Union: Honoring Women in Public Service and Government,” visit the National Women’s History Project for a nomination application form. Women’s suffrage movement history will be highlighted by the organizations and individuals participating in the NYS Path Through History annual observance this year, June 20-21, 2015. The weekend includes a new exhibit at the 1816 Farmington Quaker Meetinghouse in Farmington, NY on June 20, 2015, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

In a conversational presentation at Woodstock Town Hall, Woodstock, NY on Sunday, June 21 at 2 p.m., Olivia Twine will confront her youthful illusions about slavery in the North in order to reconcile with what she has learned by studying abolitionist and women’s rights activist Sojourner Truth’s path through Ulster County. Olivia tells her story and invites others to do the same in this free NYS Path Through History weekend event. Call 845-706-0540 for more information.

The New York State Museum has presented a master plan for the renovation of the state museum’s galleries to the state Board of Regents. The state museum in Albany, NY is already committed to present a women’s suffrage movement centennial exhibit in the fall of 2017. There hasn’t been a major renovation of the museum’s galleries since 1976.

Sally Roesch Wagner offers a 35-minute monologue as Elizabeth Cady Stanton, followed by audience interaction featuring the 19th-century feminist’s bold wit and brilliant logic. Wagner says: “Having performed as Elizabeth Cady Stanton for 26 years, I have grown old with her. I am drawing on my 40 years of Stanton research to offer a celebratory gift – the seasoned Stanton at her witty, brilliant, and iconoclastic best.” The program is limited to 12 performances. To schedule, contact barb@sallyroeschwagner.com.

Both the NYS Senate and Assembly have approved a women’s suffrage centennial planning commission for 2017.The bill is on its way to Governor Andrew Cuomo for signing. Follow news of suffrage centennial celebrations at our sister site, SuffrageCentennials.com
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Meet your friends at the Suffrage Wagon Cafe. Follow SuffrageCentennials.com for news and views about upcoming suffrage centennials. “Choose it and Use it” is a video reminding us of how the past is linked to what we do today and its impact on the future.

Women’s suffrage news update & two videos!

WATCH THE VIDEO ON SUFFRAGE WAGONWomen’s suffrage news from Suffrage Wagon News Channel on Vimeo.

 

It’s that time of the month for the news highlights from Suffrage Wagon News Channel. There wasn’t time to add the update about the NYS Senate passing the state suffrage centennial planning commission for 2017. But there’s plenty to say about the matter. See coverage on SuffrageCentennials.com. If you’re a New Yorker, contact your representative in the NYS Assembly and support appropriations for the state commission whose work will extend from 2017, the state suffrage centennial, to 2020, the suffrage centennial for the United States.

VIDEO: Answer the Clarion Call to Celebrate New York State’s 2017 Suffrage Centennial on Vimeo.

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Comment on the Suffrage Wagon blog. Meet your friends at the Suffrage Wagon Cafe. Follow SuffrageCentennials.com for news and views about upcoming women’s suffrage centennial events and celebrations. 

“Choose it and Use it” is a video reminding us of how the past is linked to what we do today and its impact on the future. Celebrate women’s freedom to vote.

URGENT: NYS Senate vote today on proposed NYS suffrage centennial commission for 2017!


Tune into the video at 3 p.m. EST
to find out suffragewhat NYS legislators are saying about the proposed bill to establish a 2017 state suffrage centennial planning commission. A vote is scheduled for today, May 27, 2015. New Yorkers: If you haven’t made your voice heard, now’s the time (SB #2388). The NYS legislative session is nearing an end. Use the Twitter hashtag, #NY4suffrage, for updates and your comments!

YOU CAN TAKE ACTION TODAY BY CONTACTING YOUR STATE SENATOR, STAY IN TOUCH WITH #NY4SUFFRAGE TWITTER HASHTAG, AND WATCH SENATE VIDEO OF PROCEEDINGS AT 3 P.M. EST!

New York State SenateFollow Suffrage Wagon News Channel on Facebook and Twitter. Quarterly newsletters just by signing up. Suffrage Wagon News Channel has video platforms on Vimeo and YouTube.

Comment on the Suffrage Wagon blog. Meet your friends at the Suffrage Wagon Cafe. Follow SuffrageCentennials.com for news and views about upcoming women’s suffrage centennial events and celebrations. 

“Choose it and Use it” is a video reminding us of how the past is linked to what we do today and its impact on the future. Celebrate women’s freedom to vote.