Best women’s history museums in the US: essential exhibits to visit right now

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Rochester, NY
While touring Susan B. Anthony’s former home, pause in the front parlor: this is where the activist was arrested for voting in 1872, before being tried and fined $100 . Nearby you will find a cafe that marks the year, the 1872 Coffee-as good as Landmark of 1872, a locked bronze urn by sculptor Pepsy Kettavong, commemorating Anthony and the 14 other women whose vote brought national attention to the suffrage movement. Anthony’s grave in Mount Hope Cemetery in Rochester was, until recently, a place where engaged citizens could put up their “I Voted” sticker after the election. (The practice got banned after the 2016 election because the paste was damaging the stone.)

Ponca City, Oklahoma
Pioneer women from Oklahoma are the subject of exhibits here, marked in front by a historic 17-foot-tall, 12,000-pound bronze sculpture of a young pioneer mother in bonnet, clutching a Bible and holding her son by the hand. It’s called “Confident” (although everyone just calls it the Pioneer Woman Statue), and it was commissioned in 1930 by philanthropist-turned-Governor of Oklahoma Ernest Whitworth Marland. Its unveiling was a grand affair, marked by a national radio address by none other than White House President Herbert Hoover and Oklahoma celebrity Will Rogers. The museum came later, dedicated in 1958, with a new wing dedicated in 1998.

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