Women's History Month Photo Exhibit

Transcending Barriers

In recognition of Women's History Month, the DC Public Library is exhibiting photographs from the Washingtoniana Division, focusing on African American women who influenced the history and culture of Washington D.C.

This exhibit highlights the contributions of African American women in the fields of art, broadcast journalism, education and politics. It features photographs of women, such as noted jazz singer and pianist Shirley Horn, who collaborated with many jazz greats including Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Carmen McRae and Wynton Marsalis. Denyce Graves is an American mezzo-soprano opera singer and a 1981 graduate of the Duke Ellington School of the Arts. The exhibit also includes photographs of educators and political activists who made their mark in politics and education on a local and national level.

Mary Church Terrell, political activist and educator, dedicated her life to improving social conditions for black American women. Terrell's long life spanned the worst decades of segregation in the United States, during which she worked tirelessly against Jim Crow laws. She helped found two of the most important black political action groups, the National Association of Colored Women and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. She fought for women's suffrage and for integration in public education and lived just long enough to see her efforts bear fruit both in her home city of Washington, D.C. and the nation at large. Mary McLeod Bethune was an American educator and civil rights leader best known for starting a school for African American students in Daytona Beach, Florida that eventually became Bethune-Cookman University. She was an advisor to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, serving as a member of Roosevelt's Black Cabinet, where she shared the concerns of black people with the Roosevelt administration.

To learn more about the contributions of women to the history and culture Washington, D.C., please consult the DC Public Library catalog at dclibrary.org. This exhibit is located on the second floor East lobby of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library. For more information please contact 202-727-1261.