Boston is a city known for its history, and women had a direct hand in all of the history that makes Boston great. There is no better time to learn about the contributions women made to the history of our city than March, Women’s History month. Here are some of the best places, tours, exhibits and ways to learn about women’s roles in the shaping of Boston and the country.
Boston Women’s Heritage Trail
Boston Educational Development Foundation
26 Court Street
Boston, MA 02108
Hours: Guided tours by appointment: Email Liane Curtis at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information
Everyone knows about Boston’s famous Freedom Trail, but few seem to know about the Women’s Heritage Trail. The WHT is actually a series of several walkable tours that highlight more than 200 women whose accomplishments and lives added to the rich history of Boston. Seven guided tours and six student designed mini-walks make up the Boston Women’s Heritage Trail making it possible for each walk to focus on a specific neighborhood.
A Gilded and Heartbreaking Life: The Photographs of Clover Adams, 1883-1885
Massachusetts Historical Society
1154 Boylston St
Boston, MA 02215
Hours: This exhibit runs from February 9 to June 2, 2012 and is open Mon to Sat -10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Just in time for Women’s History Month, the Massachusetts Historical Society is hosting a fascinating exhibit of photography done by Clover Adams in the late 1800s. Clover Adams was wife of historian Henry Adams and her photographs give a unique look into the life of a Boston women during the Gilded Age. The exhibit also features Clover Adams’ personal letters and notebooks.
Related: Offbeat Museums in Massachusetts
Historic New England
141 Cambridge St.
Boston, MA 02114
Hours: Women’s History series is every Sunday in March from 2 to 3:30 p.m
Historic New England is celebrating Women’s History Month with Sunday lectures that explore different roles women played in Boston’s early days. The series center around women’s interactions in Harrison Gray Otis House, built in 1796, and explores all classes of women. The series kicks off on March 4 with “Ladies of the House” which discusses the remarkable women that called Harrison Gray Otis House home over the course of its life as a private residence. March 11th will give visitors the chance to learn what life at the house was like for domestic servants. Match 18th will focus on the homes years as a boarding house run by two sisters. And the series will end on March 25th with a stroll around Beacon Hill and a discussion of the famous women who have lived there. Admission for each program is $15 with a discount for Historic New England members. If you are interested in registering for the series please call 617-994-5920.
The Boston Women’s Memorial
Commonwealth Avenue Mall, Boston (Between Fairfield and Gloucester Streets)
Dedicated in 2003, this set of three statues depicts and commemorates Abigail Adams, Lucy Stone, and Phillis Wheatley. These three progressive women were all ahead of their times. Adams was an advisor to her husband President John Adams and fought for women’s rights. Phillis Wheatly was a notable poet who holds the honor of being the first published African-American. Lucy Stone, like Adams, was also at the forefront of women’s rights and funded her own education to become one of the first women in America to graduate from college. The bronze statues were created by artist Meredith Gang Bergmann. Bergmann’s vision for these statues was to take them off their pedestal, quite literally, and have them on ground level so viewers could interact with them. The statues lean or sit against their pedestals and it’s not unusual to find that they have been left gifts of flowers.
Monday Night Film Series: Women’s History Month
Central Library/Boston Public Library
Rabb Lecture Hall
700 Boylston St.
Boston, MA 02116
Hours: Monday evenings starting at 6 p.m.
For the month of March, the Monday Night Film series at Boston Public Library’s Central Library will focus on film about important historic women. Over the course of the month the series will be showing Elizabeth, Veronica Guerin, North Country, Princess Kaiulani. It is free to attend the film series.
Related: Guide To Movies Filmed in Boston
Renee Mallett is the author of several books about art, culture, and New England. She was the owner and director of an art gallery and has written about arts and entertainment on a national level for several print and online journals. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.