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    Visionary Leader

    Social Reformer

    Women's Rights Advocate

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On Sunday, September 29th, from 2:00-4:00 p.m., the Frances Willard House Museum will commemorate Willard’s 180th birthday with its annual Open House highlighting Willard’s “Do Everything” brand of leadership and celebrating the leader in all of us.

Our theme this year is Real Leaders Know Their History. Willard encouraged women leaders to take on issues of importance to them and work to make change in whatever way they could. We honor that work by celebrating women leaders from the past, supporting women who are leaders today, and encouraging leaders of the future.

The first floors of the Willard House and the WCTU Administration Building will be open and the new exhibit Women and Prohibition will be on display. Our new bike rack will be unveiled – thanks to the Evanston Bicycle Club for a grant to fund this project! Cupcakes and lemonade will be served.

Cost for the event is free.

Thank you to our Sponsors! Berkshire Hathaway Home Services KoenigRubloff Realty Group, Evanston Bicycle Club, Evanston Lumber, McGuire, Igleski and Associates, Specialty Alarm Engineering.

Women and Prohibition: A War of Mothers and Daughters, Sisters and Wives

Women and Prohibition is a new exhibit at the Frances Willard House Museum that highlights the work of women to expand their public lives, advocate for themselves, and protect their families from the serious problems that alcohol can cause. Visitors can learn how women acted in the political arena before they were able to vote and how they worked to gain the vote to extend their reach. This exhibit is part of our ongoing recognition of the 100th anniversary of the 18th (Prohibition) Amendment.

Women and Prohibition will open Thursday, September 5, 2019. The museum is open Thursdays and Sundays from 1-4 p.m. and admission is $10 ($5 for students).

This exhibit is a companion to two exhibits at the Evanston History Center – Dry Evanston: the Untold Story (up through January 2020) and Spirited: Prohibition in America (up through October 20, 2019). Special joint tours of the Willard House and the Dawes House are offered in conjunction with these exhibits. Purchase an admission to either museum to receive your coupon for half-off tours at the other museum. 

Truth Telling: Frances Willard and Ida B. Wells

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A Community History Project of the Frances Willard House Museum and Archives

In the 1890s, Woman’s Christian Temperance Union President Frances Willard and journalist and activist Ida B. Wells fought a war of words in the international press over Willard’s lack of public support for Wells’ anti-lynching campaign. Wells called Willard’s moral leadership into question and demanded that Willard and the WCTU join her anti-lynching campaign. Under Willard’s leadership, the WCTU eventually passed resolutions opposing lynching, but Willard’s language and actions complicate her legacy.

Truth Telling: Frances Willard and Ida B. Wells is a community history project that explores this conflict. The project includes a digital exhibit of original archival sources, community conversations, and public programs. The goal of the project is to uncover the full truth of the conflict, and explore its many meanings and ramifications for our world today. 

To visit the new website, click here.

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