February 21, 2018
NYU Libraries posted this video of the entire event.
The second event of 2018 for The Suffragents was right on the NYU campus. Well, our urban university doesn’t really have a campus in the traditional sense, but being invited to speak at Bobst Library means a temporary berth on the south side of Washington Square Park, the part of our complex that actually feels a little more like a more traditional university. The Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, where I teach, is on The Bowery in the East Village, about an eight minute walk due east down 4th Street. It’s an area with a very different vibe.
Being on “campus” was also a reminder of some important Men’s League for Woman Suffrage geographical lore. Max Eastman,
the League’s first secretary-treasurer, started the organization in his apartment at 118 Waverly, just around the corner.
And the women who inspired him to service included his sister, Crystal Eastman, who lived with him there;
his girlfriend, Inez Milholland, the youthful face of the suffrage movement;
And Eastman’s first wife, Ida Rauh.
Greenwich Villagers, all, and all early female graduates of NYU Law School.
We had a lovely turnout, one better than we expected on a gorgeous 70-plus degree evening in a New York February. FEBRUARY. The organizer was Brynne Campbell, the library’s health sciences reference associate, and the space was a nifty new one on the 7th floor.
The photo above is of a part of the group on the right side of the column as I faced them. It included my graduate student in GloJo-Latin American Studies, Nidia Bautista, who is already waxing nostalgic about graduation, although it is not until mid-May. Last week she tweeted this:
Especially @brookekroeger! The best editing process.
— Nidia Bautista (@nnmeli) February 17, 2018
And then, after last night’s presentation, this:
— Nidia Bautista (@nnmeli) February 22, 2018
It was so lovely of Nidia to come. I was just as thrilled to see my pals Bernadette Murray and Bran Raskovic;
and our journalism librarian Katy Boss; Michael Stoller, the library’s associate dean for collections and research services; Laura Lee Huttenbach of the Literary Reportage program at NYU Journalism (and already a published author), who I’ve recently gotten to know; and Kayla Stewart, who I had met just that morning. Thanks to all for coming, along with those who were new to me.
For this presentation, I thought I would try something new. So I focused on how and why the members of the Men’s League embraced the perceived emasculation of being “suffrage husbands,” the derogatory term long used to describe men roped to the suffrage movement by wedlock, and turned it into a “title of distinction.”
In almost no time at all, save the catcalling and peltings they endured during the 1911 suffrage parade down Fifth Avenue, they managed to transform images like this one:
Or this one:
Into one more like this:
The evening provided another chance to share the “Arguments” video — seven minutes of highlights from the arguments men posed on behalf of women’s equality in the second decade of the 20th century.
The Suffragents won the Gold Medal in US History in the 2018 Independent Publisher Book Awards competition.
National History Day contestants: Please read this.
Next up on the calendar in 2018: June 14: Roosevelt Island Historical Society. July 7 East Hampton Library’s Tom Twomey Series (hosting with Sara Davison the garden author and expert Charlotte M. Frieze) : August 4: Shelter Island Historical Society. 2019: March 13: Scarsdale Woman’s Club