Fredonia opera house to present talk on women’s suffrage movement

Submitted Photo Here is a photo of women protesting their suffrage in the late 1890s. The 1891 Fredonia Opera House will continue its new series of lectures June 6 at 7 p.m.

The 1891 Fredonia Opera House continues its new series of free-admission local history lectures when it presents The Local Women’s Suffrage Movement on Wednesday June 6, at 7 p.m.

The Local Women’s Suffrage Movement is the second of seven multimedia presentations that will be presented over the course of this year as part of the new Chautauqua County History Series. The series features area town, village and county historians presenting lectures on topics of local history and their connection to the world at large.

This second program in the series features Jamestown Community College (JCC) Professor Traci Langworthy talking about Chautauqua County’s notable contributions to the women’s suffrage movement. In the early 1890s, Chautauqua County was home to more supporting members of the national women’s suffrage organization than any other county in the nation. As the movement matured, local suffrage leaders helped pave the way for the passage of women’s suffrage in New York State in 1917, a milestone commemorated around the state last fall upon the occasion of the 100th anniversary. Video and photographs will help bring the lecture to life.

Langworthy currently serves as Associate Professor of History at JCC, where she has taught full-time since 2004. She earned her master’s degree in history and museum studies from the University of Delaware and completed her bachelor’s degree in history at Oberlin College. She is currently at work on her Ph.D. in American Studies, researching female stars of the popular lecture platform in the late 1800s.

Langworthy’s research in local history has helped to shine a light on Chautauqua County’s place in the history of the suffrage movement. An essay of hers appears in Votes for Women: Celebrating New York’s Suffrage Centennial published by SUNY Press in 2017. Some of Langworthy’s and her students’ research is also available on a website she established through JCC to celebrate regional women’s history. Those interested may visit sunyjcc.edu/womenshistory.

Admission to the program is free, with donations gratefully accepted.

The next program in the lecture series will be held on July 19, and will feature Chautauqua County History Michelle Henry.

Support for some Opera House programming comes from the United Arts Appeal of Chautauqua County, and the Arts Services Initiative of WNY Inc.’s Give for Greatness program.

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