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Celebrating

We started celebrating Women’s History Month on Sunday, March 3, at Woodlawn Cemetery in New York City. Over and over again, I have visited Woodlawn Cemetery, the burial site of many historic women such as Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Madam C. J. Walker and her daughter Lelia, Gertrude Ederly, Carrie Chapman Catt, Mary Garrett Hay, Miriam Leslie, and Nellie Bly.


A particularly memorable visit was the day we attended an exhibit and music festival

honoring the “Queen of Salsa”—Celia Cruz.  A special feature of that visit was



that her mausoleum was open so that we could go inside. Top images: Elizabeth Cady Stanton's gravestone and a scene from the 2015 event honoring Celia Cruz.

Sunday’s visit was a trolley tour of funerary art and monuments created by women: stained glass artists, sculptors, and landscape designers. A stunning moment was when the tour guide opened the doors of a mausoleum revealing the gorgeous stained glass windows, mosaics, and a cremation urn by Marie Zimmerman.

Left image: The doors and small chair in the lower left side were also created by Zimmerman, a noted metalworker. The river scene in the center of the window was created by another artist.

Nearby was a one-of-kind sculpture, “Memorial of a Marriage,” representing two women embracing on a bed by sculptor Patricia Cronin.  Patricia, who was one of the guides on the tour, said that she created the “World’s 1st Marriage Equaltiy

Monument,” as the final resting place for

her and her life partner Deborah Kass. Imagine below: Patricia Cronin with her bronze sculpture, "Memorial of a Marriage."



The final stop was the spectacular Belmont Mausoleum, the burial place of Alva Belmont, a leader and financier of the women's suffrage movement who I wrote about in The Vote:

Women’s Fierce Fight. The door was open so that we could enter and view the stained glass windows by Mary Lawrence Tonetti. It was the second time I had been inside the  mausoleum. The first time was in 1995, interestingly on the same day, March 3, when the door was opened for the first time since Alva Belmont was buried there in 1933!  I had read that Alva Belmont had requested that she be buried with a suffrage banner. A documentary film producer had arranged to have the door opened so that I could see if a banner was there. Here is the link the  short documentary about my 1995 visit to Woodlawn Cemetery, “Honoring American Heroines” : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mdo67d6p_mY

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a few seconds ago

I am actually glad I waited to read this until this morning after Joe Biden's speech where he said: “Clearly, those bragging about overturning Roe v. Wade have no clue about the power of women in America. They found out though, when reproductive freedom   

was on the ballot and won in 2022, 2023, and they will find out again, in 2024.” Reading this blog gives me some hope that we can return to a better place again. Thank you.

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Thank you! We can! We must! We will!!

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