Inez Milholland to be featured in 2017 suffrage exhibit

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The New York State Education Department and the Office of Cultural Education will present a large-scale exhibition and companion catalog titled, Votes for Women: Celebrating New York’s Suffrage Centennial, at the New York State Museum between November 4, 2017 and May 13, 2018. Inez Milholland, the U.S. suffrage martyr, will be one of many activists featured in the exhibition.

Votes for Women will celebrate the centennial of women’s suffrage in New York State and raise public awareness of the struggle for women’s suffrage and equal rights from the 1848 Seneca Falls Convention through 1917 when New York State granted women the right to vote. The exhibition will also address the nationally significant role of New York State leaders in regards to women’s rights and the feminist movement through the early 21st century.

For information about the film, “Forward into Light,” produced by Martha Wheellock, visit the film’s web site: InezMilholland.org The coverage of Milholland continues as a feature of the National Women’s History Project that sponsored the centennial of her death during 2016. The work to spread the word about Milholland’s contributions continues on InezMilhollandCentennial.com Events and celebrations continue from now through 2020, the national centennial of women voting in the United States.

Honor Inez Milholland during Women’s History Month in March!

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There’s plenty of time to plan an event, reception, party, or fundraiser for your organization or friends. An event honoring Inez Milholland, America’s suffrage martyr (1886-1916) is easy because there’s a 15 minute film that will round out your program. Visit the web site of filmmaker Martha Wheelock to find out how you can get your copy. And then start a “to do” list about your program and what goodies you will serve. Check out the Inez Milholland Centennial web site for resources and a report on the 2016 Inez Milholland observance.

Women’s march 2017 included tribute to Inez Milholland, U.S. suffrage martyr!

Women’s march included tribute to Inez Milholland, U.S. suffrage martyr, in Lewis, NY  on Vimeo.

There’s more to come relative to Inez Milholland. Hundreds of New York women honored her on January 21, 2017 as part of the nationwide women’s march “sister” events. A highway marker, funded by the Pomeroy Foundation, will be installed near her grave in Lewis, NY during 2017. Milholland will be acknowledged in the “Votes for Women” suffrage exhibition at the New York State Museum that opens in early November 2017 in Albany, NY. And Inez is a highlight of an exhibit at the Adirondack History Museum in upstate New York this year. Details to be announced.

Audio in video from Doris Stevens, “Jailed for Freedom” (1920). Reading fron Librovox. Edit by Suffrage Wagon News Channel.

Centennial observance raised profile for Inez Milholland

Today, the name Inez Milholland is familiar to more Americans than ever before. It has appeared on buttons, signs, tee shirts, sashes, exhibits, marquees and more this past year. The increased public awareness is due at least in part to the year-long Inez Milholland Centennial campaign that began in late 2015 under the auspices of the National Women’s History Project.

The campaign set out to raise the profile of Inez, a prominent New York suffragist and attorney who became a symbol of the work and sacrifice that went into winning Votes for Women 100 years ago. Inez was only thirty when she died in Los Angeles after a grueling 1916 speaking tour for equal suffrage. Her death of exhaustion and pernicious anemia saddened, angered and inspired women throughout the country. Her fellow suffragists started picketing the White House on January 10, 1917, just weeks after her memorial in the U.S. Capitol.

In addition to their educational work, Centennial project co-chairs Marguerite Kearns and Robert P.J. Cooney Jr. set in motion the nomination of Inez for a Presidential Citizens Medal. Their online petition drew over 1,000 signatures supporting her nomination.

“Although President Obama didn’t recognize Inez – or anyone else – with a Presidential Citizens Medal in 2016,” Kearns noted, “we succeeded in bringing the past, present, and future together. Inez’s memory is alive again.” Kearns is a writer specializing in women’s history and the granddaughter of suffrage activist Edna Kearns, whose suffrage campaign wagon, the “Spirit of 1776,” will be on exhibit at the New York State Museum during 2017 (SuffrageWagon.org).

“Our work continues to honor Inez and all American suffragists so they can take their rightful place in history,” said Cooney, author of “Remembering Inez,” a tribute to the suffrage martyr, and “Winning the Vote,” a suffrage history. “We are heartened by the warm reception and high-profile publicity Inez received.”

The Centennial project’s goal was substantially enhanced by filmmaker Martha Wheelock, who created a 15-minute film, “Forward Into Light,” on Inez. Martha has already distributed the DVD free to thousands of individuals, community organizations, policymakers and educators (InezMilholland.org).

The Centennial web site (InezMilhollandCentennial.com) will continue to offer information, news and resources as we approach 2020, the nation’s suffrage centennial. New York is celebrating its suffrage centennial in 2017 since women in that state won the vote in 1917 after a hard fought campaign. As a New Yorker who campaigned for Votes for Women for many years, Inez will draw additional attention to the heroic drive for American women’s voting rights.

The National Women’s History Project (nwhp.org) is a 501(c)3 organization that has been educating the public for more than 35 years about the importance of including women in American history.

Recognizing Inez’s role leading the first inaugural women’s march in the nation’s capitol, the NWHP became a sponsor of the Women’s March on Washington in 2017. The NWHP has launched the Women’s History Alliance (nwhp.org/the-womens-history-alliance/) to bring together the increasing number of supporters interested in specific programs that honor multicultural women in the United States.

Inez Milholland & the 2017 women’s march!

PIONEER OF WOMEN’S INAUGURAL MARCHES – INEZ MILHOLLAND – IS NOMINEE FOR PRESIDENTIAL CITIZENS MEDAL FROM OBAMA

When women march in Washington on January 21, 2017, they are following in the footsteps of forerunner Inez Milholland. Riding a white horse, Inez led the historic, commanding, and impressive 1913 march to demand women’s right to vote. Now is also the time to award Inez Milholland the Presidential Citizens Medal for her sacrifice and commitment to women’s equality. Milholland was nominated for the medal in 2015.

The 2017 march will be the second historic women’s march in the U.S. Capitol linked to a presidential inauguration. The first was the great woman suffrage demonstration on March 3, 1913, just before the inauguration of President Woodrow Wilson. The leading mounted herald of that spectacular Votes for Women march, which included between 8,000 to 10,000 participants, was Inez Milholland (1886-1916). Her dynamic and youthful Joan of Arc image was featured in newspapers across the nation. Three years later, Milholland died during an intense suffrage campaign at age 30 and became the nation’s suffrage martyr.

The year 2016 is the centennial of Milholland’s death. The National Women’s History Project (nwhp.org) has been sponsoring a year-long centennial observance. The release of a new film, “Forward into Light,” by Martha Wheelock of Wild West Women has spread the story of Milholland’s ultimate sacrifice to thousands of individuals, schools, libraries, and community groups across the nation (InezMilholland.org).

Leading up to the 2017 women’s march, activists and observers from around the nation and in other parts of the world will be watching to see if President Obama awards Inez Milholland a Presidential Citizens Medal before he leaves office. U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier of California nominated Milholland in November 2015 for the award and over one thousand individuals and organizations have registered their support for the nomination on a petition to the President.

Filmmaker Martha Wheelock noted, “We gather strength by viewing current events in the larger context of American history. By observing the centennial of Inez Milholland’s death, we are writing her back into history. By recognizing Inez as the mother of women’s marches in the nation’s capitol, we honor our rich national history and her legacy.”

Sandra Weber, author of “The Woman Suffrage Statue,” which was published this year by McFarland & Company, also emphasized the connection between the 1913 march and the 2017 one. Both marches were organized to mobilize support for women’s rights. “The objective is to find the strength and courage to take up the struggle, to consecrate oneself to the cause of human rights, to never turn back, to go forward with new devotion and new faith,” Weber said. In her book, Weber cites Inez Milholland as an important catalyst in the later suffrage movement.

Turning Point Suffragist Memorial Association in Lorton, Virginia, has joined with the National Women’s History Project in California and other groups and individuals across the nation in a growing network building toward 2020, the centennial of American women winning the right to vote.

The present, past and future come full circle as these organizations join hands during the final days of the Obama administration. They are expressing support for Inez Milholland to receive a Presidential Citizens Medal.

“The Presidential Citizens Medal is symbolic and it will offer tangible recognition of the long and difficult struggle of American women and their male allies to tip the balance toward equal voting rights,” noted Molly Murphy MacGregor, executive director and co-founder of the National Women’s History Project. The NWHP sponsored the yearlong Inez Milholland Centennial campaign, whose co-chairs Marguerite Kearns and Robert P.J. Cooney, Jr. have prepared a petition and final support documents for presentation to the White House.

“One hundred years ago, while on the campaign trail in the west, Inez Milholland predicted that ‘Victory is in sight.’ A century later, Americans are still coming to terms with how the dream of equality has not yet been realized,” noted Los Angeles filmmaker Wheelock. She has distributed “Forward into Light,” her documentary about Inez, free during this centennial year. The DVD is available through InezMilholland.org. A petition supporting the nomination and more information are available at http://www.InezMilhollandCentennial.com.

RECENT BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

PUBLIC RADIO COVERAGE: http://wamc.org/post/petition-supports-ny-suffragist-presidential-citizens-medal
Article by John Tepper Marlin “A Suffrage Warrior”
Article by Sandra Weber in History News Network