Women of Stamford, Past and Present

The Stamford Historical Society Presents

Of Significant Influence: Women of Stamford, Past and Present

May 6 to November 20, 1999
Stamford Historical Society Building

“Of Significant Influence: Women of Stamford, Past and Present” recognizes the significant influence that Stamford women, individually and collectively, have exerted in the polity, economy and community of Stamford and beyond. The exhibit explores the contributions–both direct and indirect–they have made from more traditional places (first and foremost, the home, but also religious institutions and schools) and from less customary locations such as the Connecticut Legislative Chambers, corporate boardrooms and scientific laboratories.

In examining the community through the lens of a single sex, this exhibition seeks to explore the implicit question: what role has gender played in Stamford residents’ ability to influence public life both locally in Stamford and in the larger world?

The exhibition consists of the following five main elements:

  1. a national timeline of women’s historical experience in America that narrates the story of Stamford women’s accomplishments against the backdrop of women’s broader pursuit of equality in the nation;
  2. annotated, chronological (up to the present day) lists of Stamford women who have contributed to the community in the areas of: arts and entertainment, business, charitable work, education and the humanities, healthcare, law, politics, religion, sciences, and sports;
  3. a gallery of images that recognize lesser known local women in their roles as producers, as consumers, as volunteer contributors to public and civic life, and as mothers;
  4. in-depth portrayals of seven notable Stamford women: comedian Gilda Radner; singer Libby Holman, philanthropist Helen Altschul, political activist Louise Seeley, urban renewal proponent Edith Sherman, educator Sarah Francis Smith, physician Dr. Joyce Yerwood.
  5. an expanding archive in one of the exhibition galleries of Stamford women’s history organized by the categories: women in arts and letters, women in business, women in charitable/non-profit work, women in education, women in government and politics, women in healthcare, women in law, women in religion, women in sciences, women in sports.

Over the course of the exhibition, names and information about significant women of Stamford are eagerly and gratefully being accepted from the general public; the goal of this ongoing information-gathering project is to establish an inclusive, permanent archive of Stamford women’s history at the Stamford Historical Society.

The exhibition draws on the Stamford Historical Society’s rich and eclectic holdings of textiles and costumes, furniture, photographs, household implements and other objects to tell the many stories of Stamford women since the 1641 European settlement of the community to the present.

you can also Browse the Connecticut Women’s Hall of Fame for “firsts” of Connecticut Women.


Views from the Timeline Gallery Installation

The exhibition draws on the Stamford Historical Society’s rich and eclectic holdings of textiles and costumes, furniture, photographs, household implements and other objects to tell the many stories of Stamford women since the 1641 European settlement of the community to the present.

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