Juanita Breckenridge Bates. In 1893, she moved to Ithaca where she became an early leader of the women's rights movement in Ithaca and Brooktondale. Photo from the Collection of The History Center.
2017 PROCLAIMED THE YEAR OF THE WOMAN IN TOMPKINS COUNTY!
According to Tompkins County historian Carol Kammen, this proclamation "...recognizes the long struggle for a woman to be able to take her place in the world outside her home."
Included in this struggle was the 80 plus years that many women fought to secure their right to vote in state and national elections. 2017 is the 100th anniversary of that hard won fight in New York State. In recognition, The History Center will be
re-enacting a woman's suffrage march in this year's Ithaca Festival Parade, and we invite all interested persons, including women, men and children, to walk with us on Friday evening, June 2nd.
The use of color became an important symbol to the suffragist. Gold and yellow became synonymous with the national movement, partly in recognition of the fact that many states in the west secured the vote for women much earlier than states in the east. The American motif of the sun and torch on many of the suffrage promotional materials symbolized the movement of the cause from west to east.
Specifically in New York State the colors of purple, white and green were also adopted, promoted by Harriot Stanton Blatch, the daughter of Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Demonstrations in New York State often intermingled these 3 colors with gold. Originally used in the British suffrage movement, purple symbolized loyalty, white symbolized purity and green symbolized hope. When a symbolic banner was created by the National Women's Party during the suffrage ratification campaign, they chose the colors of purple, white and gold symbolizing justice, purity of intent, and courage.
The History Center will provide placards for our suffrage walkers to carry in the Ithaca Festival Parade, and if you have a gold, purple or white flower pin, please wear it to show support for your fellow suffragist and the cause!
If you are interested to march with The History Center, please contact me at
Director of Youth Education and Eight Square Schoolhouse
Bookstore & Gift Shop Highlights
*Items to be purchased in The History Center book store
Mention our newsletter and get 15% off from these selected titles!
Lehigh Valley Memories: A Tour of the Lehigh Valley Railroad in New York's Finger Lakes Region, 1941-1959
Photo and text by David Marcham
Ride the trains and meet the men who run a picturesque segment of one mid-size Class I American railroad during two roller-coaster decades - the boom years of World War II, the shift from steam to diesel power, and ultimately the decline and abandonment of passenger service.
Ups & Downs of a Rural Line: Elmira, Cortland & Northern RR, 1867 to 1967 and on
by David Marcham
In this history of the Elmira, Cortland & Northern Railroad, a Lehigh Valley Branch in Upstate New York, from 1867 to 1967 and since, the author lays out the extreme perils of the early years, the buccaneers who invested & gambled for power & profit. Includes 150 photos, timetables, rosters and track maps, orders & charts.
A History of Railroads in Tompkins County
by Hardy Cambell Lee
This illustrated history records a century and a half of colorful railroading, at the end of which only one line remains in the county, carrying long trains of coal to a Cayuga Lake power plant and of rock salt from an underground mine.
Main Gallery Exhibit
||Tioga Street in 1920s and modern times. Photo montage from the Collection of The History Center.
The Altered and Preserved Landscape
On display from May 5th through September 9th, 2017
This exhibit by students from Tompkins Cortland Community College examines the local landscape and is part of the larger celebration of the 200 year anniversary of Tompkins County. The artworks explore the visual and functional conditions of Tompkins County over time by drawing on primary source materials from The History Center.
Coming Up: Our Community
Italian-American Community Display
Starting on May 20th, 2017
In conjunction with May 20th Italian-American Community Forum Day, The History Center will present images and archival materials related to the Italian-American community in Tompkins County.
Italian immigrants have been settling in Tompkins County for over 100 years and have added immensely to the economic, civic, and cultural life of our area. Often from modest origins, Italian families frequently faced economic hardship and the prejudices of their new neighbors and co-workers as they became part of the life of the community. Through their experiences, good and bad, they retained a love of family, work, friends.
|Looking West down Main Street, Trumansburg, NY. Early 1900s
Our Municipality Display Case
The A, B, C of James McLallen's Ulysses
On display through early June 2017
The History Center has a display in the Exploring Tompkins County series featuring the
Agriculture, Business, and Churches of James McLallen's Ulysses. We thank John Wertis, Town of Ulysses Historian, for providing the invaluable material, knowledge and time to bring this display to life.
Sparks from the Forge
A new webpage at
will accumulate important announcements relevant to the contemporary affairs of The History Center.
Women's Suffrage Related Events
This is a page in the Women's Suffrage section of THC website.
Women's Suffrage Related Events
will features local events related to the Women's Suffrage Centennial.
Timeline of Central New York State Women's Suffrage
The History Center's staff engaged multiple resources to identify the role of Central and Upstate New York in promoting Women's Suffrage between the 1840s and 1920s. The aim of the resource is to highlight local and regional initiatives related to the arc of progress toward women's suffrage. The timeline of Central New York State Women's Suffrage is a part of the digital educational materials
developed for the Women's Suffrage Centennial.
New town municipal brochures for Caroline, Danby, Dryden, Enfield, Groton, Lansing, Newfield, Ithaca and Ulysses in honor of Tompkins County's bicentennial. Check out the brochures
Tompkins County Bicentennial Tea Towels
Celebrate Tompkins County's Bicentennial with a commemorative - and useful - keepsake tea towel!
Want to see what our county looked like in 1866, then see the county map featured on the tea towel. Towels are available at The History Center.
Presentation "Exploring the Arc of Women's Suffrage and its Relevance to Current Issues" as The City Federation of Women's Organization (CFWO) Annual Meeting.
Tuesday, May 16th, 5:15 PM (at The History Center)
Presented by Rod Howe, Executive Director, Carole West, Youth Education Director, and Karen Pastorello, Professor of History at Tompkins Cortland Community College.
Tuesday, May 16th and Wednesday, May 17th, 7:30 PM (at the Kitchen Theatre Company)
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of New York State signing of woman's suffrage into law, three years before the US passed the 19th Amendment, Hangar Theatre, Kitchen Theatre Company, Civic Ensemble and Cherry Arts are collaborating on a two-night theater event: Four Plays - 100 Years. The four theater companies are collaborating with many Ithaca area theater artists plus a few visiting guests. All four plays will be performed each night. There will be a post-show discussion following each performance. The project is supported in part by a grant from Humanities, NY and each of the theaters. Proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to Women's Opportunity Center, Ithaca, NY. Read more
here Tickets: $10-$20 (sliding scale). To purchase, call (607) 272-0570, visit the Kitchen offices (409 W. State St.) Monday-Friday, 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM and the theater (417 W. State St.) Saturday-Sunday, 12:00-4:00 PM, or click www.kitchentheatre.org
Italian-American Community Forum
Saturday, May 20th, 9:00 AM to 2:30 PM (at The History Center)
(9am to 10am) Bring in photographs to scan of your family's Italian-American heritage.
Program starts @10am. An Italian-American event held in 1983 resulted in the generous donation of many family stories and photographs. The community forum's goals include understanding the experiences and roles of Italian-Americans using 1910 as a starting point, exploring a sense of place, connecting people across the generations, and adding new archival material. For more information, visit the
. Please register for the event
Tompkins County Bicentennial Walks and Talks with Historic Ithaca
Saturday, May 20th -
Forest Home's Iconic Single-Lane Iron-Truss Groton Bridges
Meet at the Cornell Botanic Gardens Mundy Wildflower Garden Parking Lot at the intersection of Forest Home Drive and Caldwell Road. For more information and other dates click here. To RSVP, email Christine at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ithaca Festival Parade
Friday, June 2nd, 5:30 PM
Come and walk with The History Center in the Ithaca Festival Parade as we re-enact a Women's Suffrage March reminiscent of the early 1900's! We invite women, men and children to walk with us to show
their support for the women in their lives!
Sign up with
Carole West at EightSquare@TheHistoryCenter.net.
The History Center Tabling at Ithaca Festival
Saturday, June 3rd, 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM (Cayuga Street, by DeWitt Mall)
Stop by The History Center's booth while wandering around during the Ithaca Festival. This year, The History Center's booth will feature the year of 1917. We will be offering a quick photographic tour inside the booth, quizzes, talk about county bicentennial updates, and the year of the woman in honor of the New York State Women's Suffrage Centennial.
Gallery Night: Presentation of an Archaeology Program at the Eight Square Schoolhouse
Friday, June 9th, 6:00 PM (at The History Center)
Join us for our June 9th FFGN Archaeology presentation hosted by Brant Venables, Binghamton University Archaeology Doctoral Candidate, and Carole West, Eight Square Schoolhouse Program Director.
Why is archaeology important, and why is it even more significant as we move into the 21st century? How and why did The History Center become involved in this endeavor? Brant will tackle these questions, highlight several of his current archaeology projects , and then introduce the audience to our on-going summer archaeology excavation program at the Eight Square Schoolhouse, in which the public is invited to participate!
An eclectic range of artifacts from our excavations over the past few years will be on display, including several unique items from last summer's dig! Question and answer session immediately following the presentation.
"Women Awheel: The Evolution of Bicycles In The 1800s And How it Affected "The Fairer Sex" Presentation by Donna Scott
Saturday, June 10th, 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM (at The History Center)
Join a presentation
discussing effects of bicycles and bicycling on women,
by Donna Scott, 1800s Bicycle Enthusiast.
Bicycles and bicycling affected various aspects of women's lives from the 19th century, such as dress, exercise, going out and about without a chaperone, and cultural change. Some of these changes emboldened women to seek the vote later on.
Donna Scott is a Sustaining Member of the antique bicycling club of the US, The American Wheelmen Association. Until very recently, the association concerned themselves with bicycles built before and around 1900. To become a voting member of this group, one has to ride an authentic antique bicycle 10 miles or more at a sanctioned meeting of the club. Usually people rode a high wheel bicycle at a meet to gain membership; this is what Donna did.
HistoryForge Data Entry Bee Party
Saturday, June 10th & June 24th, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM (at The History Center)
Come volunteer at our next transcription bee!
Light refreshments will be served with lots of fun and an educational opportunity that will make Ithaca history come alive. Be sure to bring your laptop. Sign up to volunteer here.
Save the Date: Book Talk "Colden's The History of the Five Indian Nations" with John Dixon
Saturday, June 24th, 2:00 PM to 3:30 PM (at The History Center)
John Dixon will speak about his recently published critical edition of
The History of the Five Indian Nations Depending on the Province of New-York in America by Cadwallader Colden. In this edition, Jon Dixon puts
The History of the Five Indian Nations in a social, political, and cultural context.
Eight Square Schoolhouse Announcement
Summer Camps for Kids and Adults
Come Dig with Us! Archaeology Day Camp
August 5, 12, 19 & 26, 2017, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM (at the Eights Square School House)
The History Center in Tompkins County is offering a field school to the public at the historic Eight Square Schoolhouse, a one-room school built in 1827 and used by generations of students and teachers. Participants will
learn archaeological field techniques and research skills by working side-by-side with several professional archaeologists; contribute to the historical record of the 8 Square School. Sign up for a day camp by emailing Carole West at EightSquare@Thehistorycenter.net. Learn more about the camp here.
Digging into Carrie's Diary: A Kid's Summer Camp
July 10-14 2017,
Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM,
Co-ed Ages 8 - 13
There are spots on the waiting list! Join us for a week of immersion into the 19th century life of 13 year old Carrie Manning, as told through the words of her 1869 diary. The Manning farm was near the present day site of Northeast School in the Town of Ithaca. A sampling of the topics and activities for this summer include c
rafting your own journal; w
riting with pen and ink; h
omespun activities; g
ardening & local herbs; N
ative American crafts;
Civil War History; n
ature walk and crafts; i
ntroduction to Archaeology; p
lus guest presenters! For more information visit the website page or contact EightSquare@TheHistoryCenter.net.
From the Collection
Forest Home Memoirs Randy Scott Little
||Photo from the Collection of The History Center.
Memoirs are a very personal and evocative way to teach history. Commonplace details of daily life resonate with all of us, regardless of our background. The History Center has recently been given a collection of essays by Randolph (Randy) Scott Little, "On Childhood in Old Forest Home." They relate the story of Randy's life growing up during the mid-20th century in one of Tompkins County's most picturesque neighborhoods. Forest Home, nestled around Fall Creek near the Cornell University campus, is today a lovely little bedroom community with charming homes along winding and hilly streets. But in the middle years of the last century it was a small enclave surrounded by farm land and a growing university.
Rod Howe |
Executive Director | Director@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 222
Carole West |
Educator, Eight Square Schoolhouse | EightSquare@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 229
Ksenia Ionova |
Community Outreach & Visitor Services | Community@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 227
Bookkeeper & Administrative Services
| Admin@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 225
Cindy Kjellander-Cantu |
Design & Support Specialist | Design@TheHistoryCenter.net | Phone: x 223
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