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Women's buttons 7

Click on the MEDIA ITEMS below for more information


Women's buttons 7

The Women's Studies Program at Frostburg State University is a multi-disciplinary approach that examines the impact and role of gender on art, philosophy, music, theater, history, literature, psychology and sociology. The idea for a "women's studies" program was first discussed among faculty members in the mid-1970's. However it would not be until the Fall of 1990 that it became a recognized academic program with course offerings and a Women's Studies minor.

“Black Girls Vote” is a non-profit non-partisan organization that was founded in 2015 by Nykidra Robinson, a first generation college graduate who earned her degree in business marketing from Frostburg State University. The impetus for founding the organization came after the shooting death of a man not far from her Northwest Baltimore home. Though the registration effort and organization is not restricted to just “young black women,” Robinson sees their entry into the realm of voting and public policy development as a key to improving the area’s public schools, job market and access to health care. As one male member of the group’s executive team noted, “Black women are the matriarchs of the family. When women move, the men will follow.” Studies indicate that although many black women vote, it is usually an older population, with only 9% of the total number of women in Baltimore between the ages of 18 and 24 even being registered according to the State Board of Elections. “Black Girls Vote” hopes to expand that base, not only by registration, but by following up, getting people out to vote when it’s time and removing any hindrances in that regard. Since its founding the organization has developed a website, held numerous registration and informational events, and garnered the assistance of several agencies. (See Note.)

Maryland History Day, a year-long educational program sponsored by the Maryland Humanities Council, is a state-wide history-based learning experience that encourages students in grades 6 through 12 to explore local, state, national, and world history. In 2015, the theme was “Leadership and Legacy in History” and included student projects from the public school systems of all three western Maryland counties (Allegany, Garrett and Washington). Many of the projects focused upon notable women with a Maryland connection. Two of these, as drawn by artist Tom Chalkley of Baltimore and depicted on buttons distributed at the annual Maryland History Day contest held on May 2, 2015, were Rachel Carson and Harriet Tubman.

Born in 1907, Rachel Carson was a Marine Biologist and writer. She is credited with helping to launch the modern-day environmental movement. Carson received her Master's in Zoology from Johns Hopkins University in 1932, and taught at the University of Maryland for five years prior to joining the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1936. Carson wrote a series of popular nature and Chesapeake Bay related articles and features for the Baltimore Sun during the 1930's. Her 1962 book entitled, Silent Spring, brought environmental issues to the attention of the American public. She resided in Silver Spring where she died of cancer in 1964.

Harriet Tubman (circa 1820-1913), was a former slave from Dorchester County, Maryland. She would go on to lead almost 300 slaves north to freedom via the Underground Railroad.

The Women’s Democratic League of Frederick County (WDL) pin was distributed at the March 2016 Annual Western Maryland Democratic Summit. The WDL was founded on October 4, 1923 by 200 “newly franchised” women. Along with advocating for women’s issues and equality for all people and encouraging Democratic women to get involved in the political process and run for office, the WDL helps support organizations working with the area’s neediest citizens.

Emerge Maryland is part of a national network which seeks to identify, train and encourage Democratic women to run for and get elected to public office. According to the organization, in the 225 years since its statehood, Maryland has elected a total of 8 women to the U.S. House of Representatives, 1 woman to the U.S. Senate, and 0 women as Governor of Maryland. As of 2016, less than 31% of Maryland State legislators are women. The button displayed here was given out at the 2014 Annual Western Maryland Democratic Summit which was held in Hagerstown, Maryland.

Barbara Fritchie (1766-1862), lived in Frederick, Maryland and was a strong supporter of the Union during the Civil War. As the story goes, Fritchie waved the Union flag at Confederate troops from her home as they marched through the city during the Maryland Campaign. There is some debate over the incident, with some historians believing it was a neighbor woman named Mary Quantrall, not Fritchie, who performed the deed. The button shown here incorporates an 1862 portrait of Fritchie, and was worn during Maryland History Advocacy Day on February 23, 2016. It was distributed by Preservation Maryland to activists who traveled to Annapolis to meet with legislators in support of historic preservation programs.
The following is an excerpt from an 1864 poem about Barbara Fritchie written by John Greenleaf Whittier describing the flag-waving event:
"Shoot, if you must, this old gray head,
But spare your country's flag," she said.


Text - Albert Feldstein

Information for “Black Girls Vote” from a Baltimore Sun article entitled, “Black Girls Vote looks to get young women to polls” by Yvonne Wenger and Mary Carole McCauley, January 3, 2016 and the www.BlackGirlsVote.com website

Collection Location:
Allegany County

Allegany County (Md.)--Biography; Allegany County (Md.)--Women.

Allegany County, (Md.)

Western Maryland Regional Library
100 South Potomac Street
Hagerstown, Maryland 21740

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