Worcester Women's History Project

Press Release

Event to Celebrate the Addition of Women's Portraits to Mechanics Hall

August 27, 1999

The Honoring Women In Mechanics Hall Task Force of the Worcester Women's History Project will sponsor a public reception on Monday, October 25, 6:00-8:00 p.m. in Mechanics Hall to celebrate the arrival of portraits of women to the Great Hall. The event will honor the accomplishments of four distinguished 19th century women whose portraits have been commissioned by the Worcester Women's History Project and will recognize and thank the many Worcester area citizens who have been involved in the initiative as volunteers and contributors over the past three years.

Hosting the celebration will be the co-chairpersons of this complex project: Mary Melville and Shirley Siff. They have coordinated the work of many volunteers and advisors through the project's many phases including historical research, selection of portrait artists, raising over $125,000 in funds, community outreach, and logistics of framing and hanging the large portraits. Portrait subjects are Clara Barton, Dorthea Dix, Abby Kelley Foster, and Lucy Stone, all of whom have connections with the Worcester area. The portraits have now been completed and framed, and are scheduled to be installed in Mechanics Hall the week of September 20.

At the celebration on October 25 the portrait artists will be introduced: Daniel Greene of North Salem NY, Numael Pulido, Hancock, NH, Susan Murray Stokes, Newbury, MA, and Charlotte Wharton, Worcester. Also featured at the celebration event will be the winning drawings of a children's portrait contest conducted in the schools in December 1997 of "Inspirations Women of Worcester County". This contest was a project of the Outreach Committee to inform children about the new portraits coming to Mechanics Hall and resulted in over 300 drawings of inspirational women in the lives of these children.

Honoring Women in Mechanics Hall is an initiative of the Worcester Women's History Project and originated in 1996 as a recommendation of its Markers and Monuments Committee. Its objective is to honor and publicly recognize the contribution of women to society by including portraits of distinguished mid-nineteenth century women connected to Worcester among those leaders currently exhibited in the Great Hall. Mechanics Hall is an historic building that has long served the Greater Worcester community. It is fitting that the thousands of men and women, and especially young people who attend events in the Hall be inspired by the example of both men and women portrayed in the Great Hall and elsewhere in Mechanics Hall to reach for excellence and responsible citizenship.

The press is invited to the reception. Please call ahead (see above numbers) if a member of the press will attend.

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Worcester Women's History Project - One Salem Square - Worcester, MA 01608
info@wwhp.org - 508-767-1852