Museum Wins Prestigious 2022 AASLH Award of Excellence for “When Women Lost the Vote” Special ExhibitionJune 15, 2022
A Virtual Version of the Exhibition Remains Permanently Available Online
The Museum of the American Revolution today announced that it has been recognized with a 2022 Award of Excellence from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) for its 2020-2021 special exhibition When Women Lost the Vote: A Revolutionary Story, 1776-1807, which explored the little-known story of women and free people of color legally voting in New Jersey following the Revolutionary War. The Award of Excellence is part of the AASLH Leadership in History Awards, the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation of state and local history.
Millions of American women were granted the right to vote with the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which marked its centennial in 2020. But more than a century earlier, women and free people of color legally held the vote in New Jersey for more than 30 years. Although New Jersey ultimately restricted the vote to propertied white men in 1807, women’s fight for equality did not end there. Rather, that earlier Revolutionary fight became a rallying cry as another generation of women took up the mantle of the suffrage movement decades later.
When Women Lost the Vote's inspiring story explored how the American Revolution shaped women’s political opportunities and activism, and it encouraged visitors to reconsider their understanding of the timeline of women’s history in America. It was also a cautionary tale about one of America’s first voting rights crises.
The exhibition lives on through an extensive virtual exhibit on the Museum’s website. Two original theatrical performances, created in conjunction with the exhibition, are available to be viewed on the Museum’s website. A tableau scene created for the special exhibit also remains permanently on display in the Museum's galleries.
“It is an honor to be recognized by AASLH for the exceptional work of our in-house exhibition team,” said Dr. Philip C. Mead, the Museum’s Chief Historian and Curator, who co-curated the exhibition alongside Dr. Marcela Micucci, the Museum’s then-Curatorial Fellow in Women’s History. “When Women Lost the Vote is a prime example of how the Museum strives to tell ‘the other half’ of the story – those that are lesser-known and often surprising. We are thrilled that the exhibition continues to be available online so that people can delve into the complexities of the American Revolution and the messy history of voting in the new nation.”
This year, AASLH is proud to confer 53 national awards honoring people, projects, exhibits, and publications. The winners represent the best in the field and provide leadership for the future of state and local history.
The AASLH awards program was initiated in 1945 to establish and encourage standards of excellence in the collection, preservation, and interpretation of state and local history throughout the United States. The AASLH Leadership in History Awards not only honor significant achievement in the field of state and local history, but also bring public recognition of the opportunities for small and large organizations, institutions, and programs to make contributions in this arena. For more information about the Leadership in History Awards, contact AASLH at 615.320.3203, or go to www.aaslh.org.
Bank of America and Comcast NBCUniversal were presenting sponsors of When Women Lost the Vote. Other support was provided by The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution. The exhibition was also made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Democracy demands wisdom.
The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH), a national nonprofit association, provides leadership and resources to help the history community thrive and make the past more meaningful for all people. AASLH serves the tens of thousands of history organizations, professionals, and volunteers around the country who help people of all ages develop critical thinking skills and understand how learning history helps society make progress toward justice. Through research, advocacy, and our field-leading professional development program, AASLH advances public history practice and connects history practitioners to critical issues in the field and to one another. For more information about AASLH visit www.aaslh.org.
About Museum of the American Revolution
The Museum of the American Revolution uncovers and shares compelling stories about the diverse people and complex events that sparked America’s ongoing experiment in liberty, equality, and self-government. Through the Museum’s unmatched collection, immersive galleries, powerful theater experiences, and interactive elements, visitors gain a deeper appreciation for how this nation came to be and feel inspired to consider their role in ensuring that the promise of the American Revolution endures. Located just steps away from Independence Hall, the Museum serves as a portal to the region’s many Revolutionary sites, sparking interest, providing context, and encouraging exploration. The Museum, which opened on April 19, 2017, is a private, non-profit, and non-partisan organization. For more information, visit www.AmRevMuseum.org or call 877.740.1776.