Marie Høeg (15 April 1866 – 22 February 1949) was a Norwegian photographer and suffragist. Høeg's published work was traditional in nature, while her private photography, including images of and created with her partner, Bolette Berg, challenged ideas of gender. She was the founder of the Horten Discussion Association, which is still active today. Høeg also started the Horten Branch of the National Association for Women's Right to Vote, the Horten Women's Council and the Horten Tuberculosis Association.
Høeg was born in Langesund on 15 April 1866. She was a photography student in Brevik and completed her photography apprenticeship in 1890.
From 1890 to 1895, Høeg lived in Finland, working as a photographer in Ekenäs and Hanko. Here, she was greatly influenced by the Finnish women's rights movement.
Høeg moved from Finland to Horten in 1895 together with Bolette Berg. Berg was five years younger than Høeg and had trained as a photographer, probably while living in Finland. Høeg and Berg set up and ran their own photography studio, which was named Berg & Høeg. Høeg used their studio not only for photography, but also as a meeting place for women interested in feminism and women's suffrage.
Høeg and Berg moved to Kristiania (present-day Oslo) in 1903 and continued working as professional photographers there, mostly producing scenic and portrait post cards.
The two founded the publishing company Berg og Høghs Kunstforlag A.S., publishing books such as the three-volume Norske Kvinder, which concerns the topic of the history of Norwegian women.
Marie Høeg died in Oslo on 22 February 1949.
Many of her glass negatives were discovered after her death inside a barn in the 1980s. The barn was on the property of a farm where Berg and Høeg lived at the end of their lives. A series of negatives in a box labelled "private" contained photographs of Berg and Høeg dressed in men's clothes, smoking, and wearing mustaches. These 440 glass negatives are now in the collection of the Preus Museum in Horten, Norway.
Today’s post is dedicated to a man of the Catalan diaspora, one of the hundreds from families who had to leave our country in the 19th century to look for better living conditions in Latin America. His parents were both immigrants from Catalonia, Catalan was his first language and the language he spoke with his family, but he isn’t known in Catalonia, only in his homeland Costa Rica.
José Figueres Ferrer (1906-1990) was the president of Costa Rica on three occasions (1948–1949, 1953–1958, and 1970–1974).
During his first term in office, he abolished the country's army, nationalized the banks, and granted women and black people the right to vote.
International Women’s Day is being observed around the world today. The tradition dates back to February 28, 1909, when the Socialist Party of America, acting on the suggestion of party member Theresa Malkiel, held a “National Woman’s Day” in New York City.
The following year, the observance was adopted by the International Socialist Women's Conference. In the ensuing years, activists for women’s suffrage and other equal rights adopted the date in nations such as Australia, Denmark, Switzerland, and Germany, though the date varied from nation to nation and was sometimes celebrated as the Women's International Day of Struggle or by other names. However, the observance became most strongly associated with communist nations and the international communist movement; it was officially adopted by the Soviet Union in 1917 and the People's Republic of China in 1949.
This remained the case until the mid-1960s, when the second-wave feminist movement embraced the day, still operating under various names and dates, as a means of calling further attention to their calls for equal pay, equal economic opportunity, equal legal rights, reproductive rights, subsidized child care, and the prevention of violence against women.
The name and date of International Women’s Day was finally formalized in 1977. The United Nations began observing the day in 1975, as part of its declaration that 1975 would be its International Women’s Year. Two years later, the United Nation’s General Assembly invited its member states to observe the date on March 8.
As a small online observance of the day, we’re posting this photograph of a small group of women strolling on a beachside boardwalk, taken by photographer and illustrator Frank E. Schoonover (1877-1972). The photograph is undated, but was likely taken in the 1910s or 1920s, around the same time that International Women’s Day was first being established worldwide. The photograph is from Hagley Library’s collection of Frank E. Schoonover negatives (Accession 2017.239). This collection has not been digitized in its entirety, but you can view a curated selection of materials online now in our Digital Archive. Just click here!
This pamphlet gave rebuttals to common arguments against women’s suffrage.
File Unit: Petitions and Memorials, Resolutions of State Legislatures, and Related Documents Which Were Referred to the Committee on the Judiciary during the 39th Congress, 1865 - 1867
Series: Petitions and Memorials, 1813 - 1968
Record Group 233: Records of the U.S. House of Representatives, 1789 - 2015
THE NONSENSE OF IT.
"It would never do for women to vote, it would lead to such divisions in families." But political divisions do not, after all, make men quarrel half so much as religious divisions; and if you allow wives to do their own thinking in religion, why not in politics? Besides, nothing makes a man so coaxing and persuasive as when he tries to induce his neighbor to vote "our ticket." Husbands who are boors all the rest of the year would become patterns of politeness for a month before election day, --if the wives only had a vote!
"The polls are not decent places for women, at present." Then she is certainly needed there to make them decent. Literature was not decent, nor the dinner table, till she was admitted to them, on equal terms. But already, throughout most parts of the country, the ballot-box is as quiet a place to go to as the Post-office; and where it is not so, the presence of one woman would be worth a dozen policemen."
"Politics are necessarily corrupting." Then why not advise good men, as well as good women, to quit voting?
"I should not wish to hear my wife speak in town meeting." I should think not, unless she spoke more to the point than the average of men. Perhaps she would; no telling till she tries. And you are willing to pay a high price occasionally to hear somebody's else wife sing in public - and if it is proper for a woman to sing nonsense before an audience, why not to speak sense?
"Woman is sufficiently represented already, through her influence on men." How is it then that the whole legislation of Christendom, in regard to her, was "a disgrace to any heathen nation," till the Woman's Rights Conventions began to call attention to it, ten years ago?
"Women are entirely distinct from men, altogether unlike, quite a different order of beings." Are they indeed? Then if they are so distinct, how can men represent them, make laws for them, administer their rights, judge them in court, spend their tax-money? If they are the same with men, they have the same rights; if they are distinct, they have a right to distinct representation, distinct, laws, courts, property, and all the rest. Arrange it as you please, it comes to the same thing.
"A woman who takes proper care of her household, has no time to know anything about politics." Why not say, "a man who properly supports his household, has no time to know anything about politics?" Show me the husband who does not assure his wife that his day's work is harder than her's. How absurd, then, to suppose that he has time to read the newspaper every day, and step round to the ballot-box once a year - and she has not?
"Women, after all, are silly creatures." No doubt they are, often enough. As the old lady says in a late English novel, "God Almighty made some of them foolish, to match the men." And the men have done their best to turn the heads of others, who were no fools by nature. But it is the theory of democracy that every man has a right to express his own folly at the ballot-box, if he will - and in time, perhaps, learn more sense by so doing. And why not every woman too?
The amount of it all is, that woman must be enfranchised; it is a mere question of time. All attempts to evade this, end in inconsistency and nonsense. Either she must be a slave or an equal; there is no middle ground. Admit, in the slightest degree, her right to education or to property, and she must have the right of suffrage in order to protect the property and use the education. And there are no objections to this, except such as would equally hold against the whole theory of democratic government.
Mary Church Terrell-African-American’s and Women’s Rights activist
Mary Church Terrell was born on September 23, 1863, in Memphis, Tennessee. Her parents were former slaves, Robert Reed Church and Louisa Ayers Church. Robert Reed was a successful businessman and would go on to become one of the first African-American millionaires from the South. Her mother, Louisa, owned and ran her own hair salon.
The family’s wealth and status gave Mary all the opportunities that a majority of African-Americans could never even dream of having at the time. Mary was fortunate enough to receive a good education, attending Antioch College in Ohio and Oberlin College, where she received both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree.
Mary’s good education and the family’s rise from the middle to upper class of society, gave Mary a better position to use her voice to fight racial inequality and women’s suffrage in the 19th century.
In 1892, Mary witnessed an event that changed the course of her life and work. Her friend, Thomas Moss, was lynched in Memphis, Tennessee, by a group of white men because his business was in competition with theirs.
Mary joined another activist and suffragette, Ida B. Wells, in creating anti-lynching campaigns throughout the South. By 1896, they started the National Association of Colored Women (NACW), and Mary served as its president from 1896 to 1901.
Mary gave speeches and campaigned for black civil rights and women’s rights as well, and after the 19th amendment was finally passed, she continued to focus on civil rights for all. She became the founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People In 1909.
In 1940, she published, “A Colored Woman in a White World”, a book that focused on her experiences with racial discrimination and women inequality. Her motto throughout her life was “keep on going, keep on insisting, keep on fighting injustice.”
Mary died at the age of 90 on July 25, 1954, in Annapolis, Maryland. She is buried in Lincoln Memorial Cemetery in Maryland.
July 13th 1900 saw the birth of Elizabeth “Bessie” Watson in Edinburgh.
Born just off the Grassmarket, at 11 The Vennel to Agnes Newton and Horatio Watson, Bessie did not take long to make her mark in the world, at the tender age of 9 she combined her two greatest loves: bagpiping and woman’s suffrage, the latter makes her arguably the youngest in Scotland, if not the world.
When she turned seven, Bessie’s aunt Margaret contracted tuberculosis – an incident which would change the youngster’s life forever. Margaret lived with the family, and Bessie’s parents, worried that she might fall ill to the contagious disease, encouraged her to take up the bagpipes in a bid to strengthen her weak lungs. Her first set of pipes was specially-produced according to her diminutive stature as she was too small to properly inflate an adult-sized bag. The half-sized set of pipes was purchased from Robertson’s pipe makers at 58 Grove Street. “I hurried home from school and carried it, in a brown paper parcel down to my (music) teacher”, Bessie recalled. As one of the very few female bagpipe players in the world at that time – not to mention one of the youngest – Bessie took to her new instrument with great enthusiasm.
Bessie had more than her bag pipe playing to make her worthy of a post here, while walking with her mother through the streets of Edinburgh, Scotland, Bessie stopped to look at the window of the Women’s Social and Political Union office. Bessie became excited about the idea of women receiving the right to vote, even though she wouldn’t be able to vote for many years.
Bessie realized that her talents could help promote votes for women. She would run from school each day to play her bagpipes outside of the Calton Jail in Edinburgh for fellow suffragettes in prison.
At the first suffrage pageant she performed at, she wore a sash with the words “Votes for Women” as she performed with her bagpipes. At the height of the suffragette movement, Bessie was playing at major demonstrations and parades for the Women’s Social and Political Union, including the famous procession through Edinburgh on 9th October 1909. On that day a large crowd watched as hundreds of banner-laden ladies, wearing the suffragist colours of purple, white and green, marched down Princes Street before congregating at Waverley Market for a rally led by Emmeline Pankhurst. Watson rode on a float beside a woman dressed as Isabella Duff, Countess of Buchan in her cage! Isabella is famed for crowning Robert the Bruce at Scone when he seized the Scottish crown, she was later captured with the Bruce family and held prisoner in a cage in the open air at Berwick for four years.
Back to oor Bessie, who just a ten year-old she travelled to London to play her bagpipes in a women’s march on June 17th, 1911. J ust a few weeks later, for George’s state visit to Edinburgh, Bessie, leading the 2nd Edinburgh Company of the Girl Guides, received recognition from the king himself as she raised her salute. Having secured regal acknowledgement in time for her 11th birthday, Scotland’s youngest female piper continued in her quest to support women’s rights, accompanying inmates bound for Holloway Prison to Waverley Station and playing the pipes as their trains departed.
For the part she played in Edinburgh’s historic women’s rights pageant of 1909, young Bessie received a special gift from one very prominent individual. Christabel Pankhurst (daughter of Emmeline) came to Edinburgh to address a meeting at the King’s Theatre and Bessie was invited to attend. During the evening she was presented with a brooch representing Queen Boadicea (Boudica) in her chariot, as a token of gratitude for her help in the pageant.
During WWI, Bessie was just a teenager and used her talents to make a difference in other ways. She began helping the Scots Guard to recruit army volunteers by playing her bagpipes
In 1926 Bessie moved with her parents to a new house on Clark Road, Trinity where she would remain for the rest of her days. Following her marriage to electrical contractor John Somerville at the end of the Second World War, Bessie devoted her life to teaching music and foreign languages. Former neighbours recall that, even into her late eighties, Bessie continued to play her bagpipes at 11am every morning. It was something she had always done.
Bessie died in 1992, two and a half weeks short of her 92nd birthday. Over the course of her long life she had experienced almost a century of social progression and upheaval, and had played her part in changing the world for the better.
Two years ago a pictorial tribute to Bessie was unveiled outside the 6VT Youth Cafe on The Vennel, not far from where she as born.
ALICE B. STOCKHAM WAS A doctor, activist, and champion of causes ranging from women’s suffrage and abandoning corsets to the merits of female masturbation. To those who found her thoughts on women’s rights, comfort, and pleasure difficult to digest, Stockham offered palatable chasers in the form of recipes for custard-filled cake, graham muffins, and rhubarb toast.
Stockham’s recipes appear in The Woman’s Suffrage Cookbook, compiled by Hattie Burr and published in 1886. Blending recipes with activism, the culinary guide was an early entry in what became a larger trend of suffrage cookbooks. These themed recipe collections proliferated in the United States between the 1880s and 1920, when the 19th Amendment, which stipulated that no citizen could be denied the right to vote on the basis of sex, was ratified.
Published primarily by women’s associations, the cookbooks featured contributions from local members as well as leading figures in the suffrage movement. Carrie Chapman Catt, president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, offered a recipe for pain d’oeufs. Charlotte Perkins Gilman, author of the famous short story “The Yellow Wallpaper,” showed how to make “synthetic quince” using juice from stewed rhubarb. And Lucy Stone, a suffragist and abolitionist who refused to take her husband’s last name and was the first Massachusetts woman to earn a college degree, contributed instructions for homemade yeast. Recipes in cookbooks, pamphlets, and suffragist newspapers often had themed names, such as “Spaghetti a la Suffragette,” “Aunt Susan Marble Cake,” or “Suffragette Savories.”
It might seem odd for women who were fighting to be seen as more than wives and mothers to reinforce such traditional roles. But the cookbooks were part of a calculated strategy: By leaning on gendered norms, suffragists countered claims that they would abandon their homes and families if they entered the political sphere.
“It was very much intentional on the suffragists’ part,” says Jessica Derleth, a historian who explores this topic in her article “Kneading Politics: Cookery and the American Woman Suffrage Movement” in the Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. “Those gendered issues were confining, but they also gave women real power. It meant that they mattered when they were cooks. It mattered when they fed their children and their husbands. As much as they saw this as a place where they could be attacked, it was also a place where they could defend themselves: ‘I am still a woman. I do still cook and I want to raise good citizens, but I’m also a good citizen. And I can handle the weight of voting and this active form of political participation without losing this part of who I am.’”
With cookbooks, suffragists also demonstrated how women’s gendered experience with tasks such as cooking and childcare made them uniquely qualified to vote on particular civic matters. “It was brilliant in so many ways because they were tapping into all of these other movements around food that were a lot more acceptable than suffrage: home economics, municipal housekeeping, pure food,” says Derleth. Following the industrialization of food processing and agriculture, issues of food safety and regulation became immensely important. These concerns were ignited by publications like Upton Sinclair’s 1906 novel The Jungle, which revealed horrific conditions within the meat-packing industry, including rotting and contaminated meat. “By linking themselves to those issues that were on the forefront of people’s minds, but were more acceptable, it made suffrage more acceptable,” Derleth says.
L.O. Kleber’s The Suffrage Cook Book of 1915 includes a satiric recipe that lists a few of these civic issues that women pledged to fix with the vote. “Pie for a Suffragist’s Doubting Husband” has an “ingredients list” that features “1 qt. Milk human kindness,” along with “8 reasons,” including “poisonous water,” “impure food,” and “child labor.” The method: “Mix the crust with tact and velvet gloves, using no sarcasm, especially with the upper crust. Upper crusts must be handled with extreme care for they quickly sour if manipulated roughly.”
While the cookbooks helped craft a more “acceptable” image for suffragists, plenty of activists refused to play the role of happy housewife. Anna Howard Shaw was a physician, minister, and leader in the National American Woman Suffrage Association. Though her sexuality was never explicitly defined, she was unmarried and lived openly with her companion, Lucy Anthony (niece of Susan), for decades. Shaw offers what’s easily the most hardcore recipe in The Suffrage Cook Book (or, perhaps, any cookbook): “I have sent but one recipe to a cook book, and that was a direction for driving a nail, as it has always been declared that women do not know how to drive nails.” For women who might work up an appetite hammering, Shaw does provide instructions for making a bacon-and-cheese sandwich. Lest anyone think she ever made the meal, however, she adds, “I never did it, but somebody must be able to do it who could do it well.”
But Shaw’s nonconforming contribution is a rarity in the cookbooks, which—like the movement itself—made compromises when it came to inclusion and equality to depict an “acceptable” form of suffrage that would appeal to a wider audience. For example, while the recipes bolstered support for women’s suffrage, this largely meant white women’s suffrage. Although there were Black suffragist groups and such leading figures as Ida B. Wells and Mary Church Terrell, these women were in large part excluded from mainstream suffrage organizations.
“The racial and economic status of these women is very evident,” says Derleth. “One cookbook from New York calls for chafing dishes and coffee percolators and devices that could only be owned by middle- and upper-class women.” According to Derleth, this exclusion continued in suffragist cookbooks published during World War I. Due to wheat and dairy shortages, many recipes substituted Southern kitchen staples such as hominy and pork fat.
“You see these ‘traditional Southern’ recipes that are coming from white suffragists and you don’t see any acknowledgement of the role Black women played in Southern cuisine and, the generation prior, that enslaved women played,” she says. “There’s so much there that feels very subtle in the food, but is a reflection of the movement and unfortunately a lot of society at that time.”
When Tennessee became the 36th state to approve the 19th Amendment on August 18, 1920, the legislation achieved the final step for complete ratification across the United States. As today marks the centennial of this watershed moment, it’s important to acknowledge where the suffrage movement succeeded and failed. The amendment didn’t guarantee that women could easily vote, but simply that no state could deny them that right based on their sex. Even after 1920, those looking to suppress voters still had plenty of methods for doing so. It would be 45 more years until the Voting Rights Act of 1965 further protected Black Americans from unfair tactics such as poll taxes or literacy tests.
Even today, BIPOC communities still face voter suppression and female politicians face pressure to conform to gender stereotypes or risk being labeled “cold” or “nasty.” But the events leading up to August 18, 1920, show that progress is possible. For those looking to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of this complex milestone in voting history, try the below angel food cake recipe from The Suffrage Cook Book. The history of suffragism may be bittersweet, but the cake is rich and light. Raise a slice to those who made history in 1920 and in 1965, and those who continue to fight for equal voting rights.
What's new in the collection this week -- a collection of photographs from North Carolina College for Women (now UNC Greensboro) Class of 1920 alumna, Lois Wilson. This collection includes photos of the Women's Suffrage Movement on our campus and a photo from the campus' influenza quarantine.