Tag Archives: Women

Rare Photo of Harriet Tubman Preserved for Future Generations

6 Mar

A remarkable photo album brought two major institutions together to restore and preserve an important piece of American history. Today, the album is available for the first time online.

The small, leather-bound album shows the signs of its age: broken in places, barely holding together in others, scuffed but somehow still elegant after a century and a half of use.

If time has taken a toll on the album, the photographs inside—placed there by a school teacher so long ago—are timeless and extraordinary.

Tucked into the album’s last page is a previously unknown photo of one of American history’s great figures: abolitionist Harriet Tubman, in what’s believed to be the earliest photo of her in existence.

Turning back a dozen pages reveals another treasure: the only known photo of John Willis Menard, the first African-American elected to Congress.

The album, and the one-of-a-kind photos it holds, were jointly acquired last year by the Library of Congress and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in a most-unusual collaboration between two public institutions. Together, they worked to conserve the album for future generations and make it accessible to the public.

So begins Mark Hartsell’s post at the Library of Congress. You may read the rest of the post, with its illustrations, here.

How the 1918 Flu Pandemic Helped Advance Women’s Rights

3 Mar

More women than men were left standing after the war and pandemic.

One hundred years ago, a powerful strain of the flu swept the globe, infecting one third of the world’s population. The aftermath of this disaster, too, led to unexpected social changes, opening up new opportunities for women and in the process irreversibly transforming life in the United States.

The virus disproportionately affected young men, which in combination with World War I, created a shortage of labor. This gap enabled women to play a new and indispensible role in the workforce during the crucial period just before the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which granted women suffrage in the United States two years later.

So begins a fascinating post by three academics at Texas A & M. You may read the rest of their post at Smithsonian.com here.

A Walk in Willa Cather’s Prairie

26 Sep

Alex Ross provides a wonderful report-essay in the New Yorker on Willa Cather and the new National Willa Cather Center: A Walk in Willa Cather’s Prairie | The New Yorker

Thinking Historically and Theologically about Wonder Woman

28 Jun

Historian and self-identified Christian Beth Allison Barr provides some wonderful history and reflections on Wonder Woman here at The Anxious Bench: Wonder Woman and Complementarianism

A Trove on the Women’s Suffrage Struggle, Found in an Old Box

10 Apr

What Women Use: Cosmetics, Hygiene Products, and Medicines

30 Mar

Today’s post was written by Laney Stevenson, Archives Technician at the National Archives at College Park. In honor of Women’s History Month, I’ve gathered together some registered patent labels of… : What Women Use: Cosmetics, Hygiene Products, and Medicines | The Text Message

The Librarian of Congress and the Greatness of Humility

20 Feb

Dr. Carla Hayden, the first woman and the first person of color to hold the post of Librarian of Congress, is a quiet but fierce defender of creative freedom. Read Sarah Larson’s fine story on her here at the New Yorker: The Librarian of Congress and the Greatness of Humility – The New Yorker

Adventures in Parenting as a Historian: The American Girl Books

20 Dec

Historian Chris Gehrz clues us in to the American Girl dolls and books. Who knew? Not this white guy without children …: Adventures in Parenting as a Historian: The American Girl Books – Anxious Bench

What we can learn from a WWII-era Orthodox nun

4 Dec

She died resisting the Nazis. Her critique of Christians in society still resonates today. Amy Frykholm at The Christian Century explains the views of Maria Skobtsova that can help us see ourselves a bit more clearly: What we can learn from a WWII-era Orthodox nun | The Christian Century

Clinton and Nouwen: A Historian Considers Hillary Clinton’s Spiritual Stamina

17 Nov

Dordt College alumna and Calvin College historian Kristin Du Mez offers some reflections on Hillary Clinton’s religious faith in light of her election defeat. (Du Mez is working on a book about Clinton’s faith.) Read Du Mez’s piece here at The Anxious Bench: Hillary Clinton’s Spiritual Stamina

Exploring the Past

Reading, Thinking, and Blogging about History

Enough Light

"In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't." - Blaise Pascal

Lenten Lamentations

Preparing to Participate in God's Mosaic Kingdom

The Text Message

Discoveries from processing and reference archivists on the job

john pavlovitz

Stuff That Needs To Be Said

Wirelesshogan: Reflections from the Hogan

"History is the record of our loves in all their magnificent and ignoble forms." Eugene McCarraher

The Way of Improvement Leads Home

"History is the record of our loves in all their magnificent and ignoble forms." Eugene McCarraher

the way of improvement leads home

reflections at the intersection of American history, religion, politics, and academic life

The Pietist Schoolman

The website and blog of historian Chris Gehrz

Reformed Journal: The Twelve

Reformed. Done Daily.


by Alex Scarfe


Thoughtful Conversation about the American West

Northwest History

"History is the record of our loves in all their magnificent and ignoble forms." Eugene McCarraher

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