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Virtual Lecture – Ballots & Palettes: How Local Women Fought for Equality A Century Ago

September 20 @ 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm

Presented by the Dutchess County Historical Society’s Melodye Moore, who is Chair of the Collections Committee and a long-serving board member and Bill Jeffway who is Executive Director.

Join us on Zoom for this virtual lecture on Sunday, September 20 at 6:30 p.m.


Under the DCHS banner focus for the year: 2020: Women’s Voices & Talents, “Ballots & Palettes” will examine the sources of agitation for women’s right to vote, achieved nationally a century ago. You may be surprised to learn that the earliest radical feminist actions sprang from the county’s large Quaker community. Eventually, working class voices joined. And only in the last decade in the run-up to success were Vassar College voices allowed to be publicly added to the clamor for equality. Equally extraordinary were women who did not get involved politically, but who broke barriers by being true to themselves, their aspirations and their skills. We examine one such woman, Caroline Morgan Clowes of LaGrange. She was a highly successful painter of local Dutchess County scenes who was featured prominently at the 1876 US Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia, but whose legacy was allowed to fade away.

Melodye Moore has been a long-serving leader at the Dutchess County Historical Society in many roles: as Chair of the Collections Committee, as Program Chair of major initiatives like the “Year of the Veteran,” and is very centrally involved in interpretation for public engagement. She authored numerous articles on local history, has been a lecturer, including at Marist College for Lifetime Studies. She served as Chief Administrative Officer and Site Manager for Mills Mansion Historic Site in Staatsburg.

Bill Jeffway was appointed Executive Director of the Dutchess County Historical Society (DCHS) in early 2017. Having retired from three decades of work in communications and marketing, primarily at the advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather, he turned his attention to his first love: local history. Given his background, he is helping DCHS “get the word out” about its enormous reserves of physical collections, research and writings that have been nurtured since DCHS’s 1914 inception.