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Women's history: From recipes to equal rights

Jeff Gordon is the author of Foxy Lady: The Authorized Biography of Lynn Bari.
JCPenney promoted the war effort in 1942 by offering stylish apparel for "Women Who Work!" These pages are part of the JCPenney Archives in DeGolyer Library.
Girl Scout - Remember the Ladies! Records of the Tejas Girl Scout Council (1922-1987) are now part of the Archives of Women of the Southwest. Selections from the archives and other women's collections are featured in a women's history exhibit at DeGolyer Library

When the national women's rights movement was pushing for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s, local supporters rallied around the cause as reported in Equal Times, a newspaper published by the Women's Center of Dallas. A 1975 copy of Equal Times is among the unexpected and enlightening materials highlighted in "Remember the Ladies! Discovering Women's History at DeGolyer Library."

The exhibit draws from the Archives of Women of the Southwest, as well as from the DeGolyer's other women's collections, to "illuminate women's roles in society and the manner in which they shaped the culture, arts, education, business, social issues, law and politics in Texas, the Southwest and beyond," says Pamalla Anderson, DeGolyer's Head of Public Services and curator of the exhibit.

Remember the Ladies Exhibit Materials

Spanning more than a century of the words and images of women, the exhibit includes many one-of-a-kind artifacts such as letters, diaries and scrapbooks. A multitude of other resources, from cookbooks and trade catalogs to postcards and photographs, also bring the past into sharper focus while demonstrating the range and depth of the DeGolyer's collections, Anderson says.

She and University Archivist Joan Gosnell began working on the exhibit last summer. SMU students Irina Bogdanova, Margaret Elder and several other students who work in the library assisted with compiling and arranging the materials.

The "Remember The Ladies!" exhibit is free and open to the public and continues through December 14.

For more information: smu.edu/cul/degolyer