The 75 documents and objects in this anniversary exhibition evoke the depth and breadth of Schlesinger’s holdings. They tell 75 stories — harrowing, heartbreaking, pathbreaking, brave — about women’s lives and about the history of the Schlesinger Library itself.

From its beginning in 1943, the plan was for the Woman’s Rights Collection, Maud Wood Park’s gift to Radcliffe, to grow. Grow it has — slowly for several decades and then, with the burgeoning women’s movement in the 1960s and the foresight of library staff who seized the moment, by leaps and bounds.

Objects on display speak to the different types of materials that make up Schlesinger Library’s collections: manuscripts, books, periodicals, photographs, posters, textiles, memorabilia, scrapbooks, oral histories, audio and video, and digital material. Objects also tell stories about the wide variety of topics covered in our holdings. Women’s organizations and women’s rights, prominent from the start, are represented, as are gender and sexuality, women’s health and reproductive lives, civil and human rights, social and economic justice, race and ethnicity, family history, girlhood, and culinary history.

  • Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies
  • Harvard History