NCWHS Advocacy

The National Collaborative for Women's History Sites advocates on behalf of women's history at historic sites.   

In 2012 and 2013, the NCWHS is advancing an effort to increase the presence of women's history throughout the National Historic Landmarks (NHL) program. Through a Cooperative Agreement with the National Park Service, the NCWHS will review and help augment the recognition of women's history throughout the NHL program. NCWHS co-planned, with the National Historic Landmarks Program and the Sewell-Belmont House staff, the December 2012 workshop that brought together a wide range of women's and public historians to develop a series of recommendations regarding the preservation and interpretation of women's history sites at the federal level, recommendations it will now seek to help implement in 2013.

NCWHS & Wikipedia: Making Women's History More Visible

Women editing wikipedia

Spring 2013: The weak presence of women's history on Wikipedia—a consequence in part of the small number of women (fewer than 15%) who edit Wikipedia—has long been a topic of conversation among those interested in promise and peril of this massive online encyclopedia, but there has been an uptick in discussion of this issue lately, as edit-a-thons and conference sessions aim both to explore and address this gap. In March 2013, the Albert M. Greenfield Digital Center for the History of Women's Education at Bryn Mawr College hosted a conference, Women's History in the Digital World, that included a talk on Wikipedia by Mia Ridge, (Department of History, Open University; editor of the forthcoming volume Crowdsourcing our Cultural Heritage); on March 15, 2013, the national event #TooFEW (Feminists Edit Wikipedia) encouraged users in groups or on their own to edit Wikipedia’s content; and on April 16th, a Women's History Edit-a-thon occurred at the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University.

Read more: NCWHS & Wikipedia: Making Women's History More Visible

Update on the NCWHS-NPS Survey

women reading in a library

June 2013—As we have mentioned earlier this year, NCWHS has partnered with the National Park Service to conduct a survey of women’s history and preservation professionals, with an eye toward improving representation of women’s experiences in the preservation programs of the NPS.

Our survey closed at the end of April 2013, and we are thrilled with the results. Hundreds of you took the time to answer our questions, and your responses will guide the work of the collaborative and the park service for years to come. Here is just a sample of how you’ve helped us:

·      Respondents suggested 59 properties related to women’s history that should be considered for federal historic designation.

·      Respondents suggested 125 existing National Historic Landmarks that are significant to women’s history but designated as landmarks for some other reason.

·      Respondents felt that we could best capture the full range of women’s stories in the National Historic Landmark (NHL) program by continuing to ensure that connections related to gender, socio-economic class, race, and sexuality are discussed in all NHL nominations.

·      Respondents felt that the highest priorities for new NHL nominations should be properties representing the themes of Women and Social Change; Women and Politics; and Women and Science.

In the coming months we will continue to collaborate with the NHL Program toward the goal of better representing women’s history. This summer we will begin pursuing new nominations of women’s history properties for landmark designation. Stay tuned for more news!

RFP: National Historic Landmark Designation for the Marjory Stoneman Douglas House

Douglas cottage

July 2013: The National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites (NCWHS), in cooperation with the National Park Service, invites proposals from historians interested in researching and writing a National Historic Landmark (NHL) nomination for the Marjory Stoneman Douglas House located in Miami, Florida.

Douglas was an author and environmental activist best known for her efforts to protect the Florida Everglades; her efforts helped shape the American environmental movement. The project has an eight-month time frame, with a projected start date of August 15, 2013, and a first draft due within two months of the start date. The author will be compensated; budget for the nomination is $16,000 to $18,000, including all expenses.

This nomination is being completed as part of a Women’s History Initiative being pursued by the National Park Service, in partnership with the NCWHS. As such, we are particularly interested in hiring a Principal Investigator with both a demonstrated expertise in the NHL nomination process and women’s history expertise.

Potential authors must have experience writing a successful National Historic Landmark nomination within the last ten years and/or completed the National Historic Landmarks six-course webinar training series. Beyond these minimum qualifications, in keeping with the goals of the Women’s History Initiative, preference will be given to those with experience writing a successful National Historic Landmark nomination within the last ten years and expertise in women’s history. Consideration may also be given to candidates who have successfully completed a National Register of Historic Places nomination for a listing at the national level within the last ten years.

Read more: RFP: National Historic Landmark Designation for the Marjory Stoneman Douglas House

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