Friday, March 24, 2023

Feel Good Friday - National Women's History Museum

Want to spend Women’s History Month increasing your knowledge of women’s history? A good place to start is the National Women’s History Museum.

Founded in 1996, the National Women’s History Museum (NWHM) is “an innovative online museum dedicated to uncovering, interpreting, and celebrating women’s diverse contributions to society” in order to “fundamentally change the way women and girls see their potential and power.”

More than four million people visit NWHM each year. A great place to start your tour of the museum is by exploring their virtual exhibits. Topics range from creating a female political culture, through the women of NASA and all four waves of feminism. This museum never closes so you can visit as many exhibits as you like at a pace that works for you.

Next, peruse biographies of inspirational women throughout history. While you’re likely familiar with people such as Rosa Parks, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Malala Yousafzai, there are hundreds of stories of lesser known women to read. You can sort the biographies by topic, era and location or click on a picture of someone you don’t recognize. That’s how I learned about jazz musician Toshiko Akiyoshi, Zuni cultural ambassador and artist We’wha, and “Mary Had a Little Lamb” author Sarah Josepha Hale.

NWHM also provides educational programming for teachers, students, and parents. This includes digital classroom resources with lesson plans and virtual field trips covering topics such as “African American Women in the Civil Rights Movement” and “The Beginnings of the Women’s Suffrage Movement 1776-1872”.

Not everything produced and curated by NWHM is virtual. There is a shattered-glass portrait of Vice President Kamala Harris, titled Glass Ceiling Breaker, on display at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, D.C., and a new exhibit, We Who Believe in Freedom: Black Feminist DC, will open at this location on March 30th. You can check the website for other upcoming events, both in person and virtual.

If you’d like to help the National Women’s History Museum educate, inspire and empower their visitors there are many ways to do so. Make a donation or shop to show your support. You can also let other people know about this resource by amplifying them on social media. Follow NWHM on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @womenshistory. #WomensHistory

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