What I’m Reading 15

I’ve gone into the podcast thing I mentioned in the last What I’m Reading (No. 14). Two really good ones:

  • The History Chicks podcast episode June 2020 on Fannie Lou Hamer. Hamer is awe-inspiring…
  • Dig: A History Podcast, on Sex & Soldiers: Combating Sexually Transmitted Infection in the US Military (May 2020) briefly references scholarship by Presentation College professor Brad Tennant on the history of sex and the Lewis & Clark expedition — for the history of sexually-transmitted infections and their prevention within a government project than for ‘soldier’ narrowly.

And brand-spanking new & interesting Suffrage history articles:

Meilan Solly, “What the First Women Voters Experienced When Registering for the 1920 Election,” Smithsonian Magazine, July 30, 2020.
A really interesting, concise, and geographically-broad look at what happened next after the 19th Amendment was ratified in August 1920 before the November election.

Cathleen D. Cahill, “Gertrude Simmons Bonnin (Zitkala-Ša): Advocate for the ‘Indian Vote,’” Women’s Vote Centennial, July 30, 2020.
An excellent profile by Cahill of Zitkala-Ša and the discourse on native enfranchisement in that period. Cahill features her in her upcoming book Recasting the Vote: How Women of Color Transformed the Suffrage Movement too. I didn’t know the Quaker influence over her education, and how that likely supported “ideas of spiritual equality of the sexes.” I also didn’t know she was buried at Arlington — I wish I’d known her history when I lived nearby there. I visited that cemetery several times… a beautiful and fascinating place… And I also really need to find and read some of Bonnin’s own writing. Add a copy of this to my TBR pile… Help Indians help themselves : the later writings of Gertrude Simmons Bonnin (Zitkala-Ša) (Texas Tech University Press, 2020).

There are certain public domain photos of Zitkala-Ša that get used ALL the time… They’re gorgeous photos, but were taken of her in college (around then, I think), and posed/costumed in certain ways. I wish there were more of her older — I found one in a 1920 news article, and I’d imagine it’s more how she presented herself in a lot of her political work as her career progressed...
The Texas Tech book has a cover image of her older too – maybe as she dressed to give lectures to women’s clubs in traditional clothing like Cahill mentions her doing.

Pensacola Journal (FL), March 16, 1920.

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