Westford Celebrates Women’s Right to Vote

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The Westford Historical Society and Museum, in partnership with the League of Women Voters of Westford and Westford Cultural Council, is hosting a series of events looking into the 19th Amendment and its legacy through book discussions, historical interpretations and more.

The event series include:

Votes for Women: Massachusetts Leaders in the Woman Suffrage Movement, a book reading and talk by Barbara Berenson

Date: Monday, February 10 at  7 p.m.

Location: Westford Museum at  2 Boston Road, Westford

Barbara Berenson, author of Massachusetts in the Woman Suffrage Movement: Revolutionary Reformers, will discuss the woman suffrage movement and give local suffragists the attention they deserve. Berenson will also address the battle over historical memory that long obscured the state’s leading role.

A 20/20 Perspective on Women’s Rights, 1920 – 2020, a talk by Barbara Berenson and panel discussion from notable Westford women in politics

Date: Thursday, Feb. 27 at  7 p.m.

Location: Westford Museum at  2 Boston Road, Westford

Barbara Berenson’s second talk will address women’s rights after they finally achieved access to the ballot in 1920.  How have women fared politically and legally over the past century? The program will continue with Berenson moderating a roundtable discussion among Westford women leaders. Elizabeth Almeida, Ellen Harde and Beth Morrison will share their experiences as active participants in Westford’s community and political life.

“I Can’t Die but Once” performance by Gwendolyn Quezaire-Presutt

Date: Friday, March 6 at 7 p.m.

Location: Westford Museum at  2 Boston Road, Westford

Gwendolyn Quesaire-Presutt presents a Living History performance of Harriet Tubman.Tubman believed in the equality of all people, black or white, male or female, which made her sympathetic to the women’s rights movement. Tubman’s role was not that of a leader but that of a strong supporter. She toured New York, Boston and Washington speaking in favor of women’s suffrage rights.

“I Now Pronounce You Lucy Stone” performance by Judith Kalaora

Date: Thursday, March 19 at 7 p.m.

Location: Westford Museum at  2 Boston Road, Westford

In this fiery presentation, Lucy describes the tension of Antebellum Boston. Women were evolving from successful abolitionists to struggling suffragists — always fierce, her belief that women and men be equal was evident in both her political and personal endeavors. Her message inspired thousands to join the suffrage movement, including Susan B. Anthony. Suitable for all ages.


“I want to go to Jail,” a one-act play written by Pamela Swing and Erika Dabanka 

Date: Friday, May 22 at 7 p.m.

Location: Parish Center for the Arts, 10 Lincoln St, Westford, MA 01886

“I Want to go to Jail” transports you back to February 1919, when women suffragists grappled with unexpected obstacles in their quest for the final vote needed to pass the suffrage amendment. They were arrested for picketing President Woodrow Wilson at the Boston State House and served time in the Charles Street Jail. These were the last arrests of the suffrage movement.

These events are designed to engage the community in celebrating and understanding the legacy of the suffrage movement.

Event website: https://museum.westford.org/westford-celebrates-womens-rights-to-vote/


About the Westford Historical Society and Museum

The mission of the Westford Historical Society is to promote the understanding and appreciation of Westford’s unique history to the community. By providing programming that features aspects of the daily lives, activities and achievements of Westford residents, we strive to expand and enrich understanding of how our town continues to evolve. We foster an environment of teaching and learning that strengthens our sense of community. We will collect, preserve and exhibit documents, photographs, objects and sites historically significant to Westford, and encourage outside efforts to do the same.

About the League of Women Voters of Westford

The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

About the Westford Cultural Council

The Westford Cultural Council’s mission is to enhance the quality of life in the Westford community by supporting arts, humanities, and sciences programs held in Westford, and by Westford artists, arts organizations, schools, and community organizations. The council promotes the availability of cultural experiences through funds awarded by the Massachusetts Cultural Council annually.


The Westford Celebrates Women’s Right to Vote events series is supported in part by Freedom’s Way National Heritage Area, the League of Women Voters of Massachusetts Citizens Education Fund and the Westford Cultural Co