The month of August marked the 100th anniversary of nineteenth amendment, guaranteeing women the right to vote. The town of Marlborough, NY had its own role in the women’s suffrage movement, which will be celebrated in a poster exhibit at the Marlboro Free Library this week.
Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence Exhibition was organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service, and will be at the library from Sept. 29 - Oct. 3. The exhibit focuses on the complexity of the women’s suffrage movement and how it relates to the world today.
The library requested the posters from the Smithsonian in early January to have them arrive during the summer months, in time for the 100th anniversary. Once COVID hit, the Smithsonian was understaffed and the production of the exhibit slowed down. The library wasn’t sure they were ever going to receive the posters.
“We thought it would be a great way to showcase the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment over the summer,” Librarian Lindsay Jankovitz said. “Just a few weeks ago, they showed up at the Library, and even though they were a little later than expected, we are excited to still be able offer this program.”
Though the posters arrived late, they remain relevant because of today’s political climate, especially given the election right around the corner. The posters also make a timely arrival with the recent passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, who spent her entire life fighting for women’s rights.
The Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition Services creates detailed and informative posters, sending them to the library where all they have to do is assemble and hand them. Whenever the library receives posters they try to tie it into their own community and history.
“What many people may not realize is that Marlborough’s very own Hallock family played a big role in the women’s suffrage movement,” Jankovitz said.
Sarah Hull Hallock had a boarding house in Milton with her sister where they took visitors such as Frederick Douglas, Susan B. Anthony, and Lucretia Mott. Ashley Poulin, a library clerk, scanned old newspapers for articles pertaining to this time and theme which will be featured during the exhibition.
The exhibition will be hanging in the library’s community room during library hours, which can be found on their website marlborolibrary.org. Since the exhibition is indoors only one group at a time will be allowed to view the exhibition. The library hours are: Tuesday, 2 - 7 p.m.; Wednesday - Friday, 11 a.m.. - 3 p.m. and Saturday, 12-3 p.m.