Varied Activities of Women Project - CALL FOR PARTICIPATION

Photo of

Ines Milholland


Do you fancy yourself a bit of a detective? Do you like a challenge? The Varied Activities of Women project is seeking contributions for a new digital project aimed at researching and writing about women's history from new perspectives.


From June of 1913 until March of 1928, the Chicago Tribune ran a bi-weekly column titled “Varied Activities of Women” featuring ten to fifteen one to two sentence summaries of news made by or considered relevant to American women. The information conveyed in these blurbs ranges from the very broad (“Women working as laborers on farms other than those at home now number nearly 225,000” – Jul 12, 1925) to very specific (“Mrs. E. T. David of Douglas, Wyo. Has been elected president of the board of trustees of the University of Wyoming. She is the first woman to hold such office” – 14 Apr 1918), with each offering a peek into a larger story of women in America and across the world. These are often not the narratives featured in history books, but instead found in quieter places: local newspapers, archives, and regional publications. They hold endless possibilities.


We are looking for inquiring and curiously minded students to help explore, tell, and share these stories, answering questions like “Who was Mrs. E.T. David of  Douglas Wyoming?” “What led the board of trustees to elect her president?” “What was the reaction to her election?" "Did she do anything notable as president?” or any others that may arise. What questions you chose to ask or story you chose to tell based on the blurb is up to you. The goal is to foster fresh takes, find hidden gems, and unearth buried narratives. 


Over the course of the spring semester, participants will write a 500 to 1,000 word carefully researched blog post to be published to the project website. Research help will be provided by librarians throughout the process and via a mid-semester workshop. There will also be the option to give a public presentation of findings, outstanding questions, and reflections in a public forum at the end.


Now, doesn’t that sound like fun? 


More information to come – watch this space for updates. In the meantime, please contact Emma Sarconi, Reference Professional for Special Collections, or Sara Howard, Librarian for Gender & Sexuality Studies and Student Engagement, with any questions.


Media contact: Barbara Valenza, Library Communications Manager