Activities & Exhibits

The WWHP promotes the research of local women's history, offers educational programming, and sponsors public events. The WWHP is also available to provide research assistance, speaking engagements and to collaborate on programs and projects.

In particular, the WWHP has the following available to the community:

Oral History Project
Oral History Project records, collects, and shares the personal and historical memories of women throughout the Worcester community. The Project focuses on the four areas that characterized the foundation and spirit of the first National Woman's Rights Convention that was held in Worcester in 1850. Those areas are work, education, health, and politics. The OHP has entered into a partnership with the Schlesinger Library at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University. The Schlesinger Library now serves as the repository for over 200 oral histories of Worcester's women.  Annual Oral History programs are open to the public and training workshops on how to conduct oral histories are also available by arrangement.
Yours for Humanity -Abby
A dramatic one-woman play about Abby Kelley Foster, the 19th century Worcester abolitionist and women's rights activist. The play teaches us how an ordinary person like Abby could affect tremendous positive change in society.  Actress: Lynne McKenney Lydick      Email
SPEAKERS’ BUREAU OFFERING:  Clara Barton (1821-1912), born in Oxford, Massachusetts, was a teacher, Civil War nurse and founder of the American Red Cross.  A general program that focuses on her life and legacy is available as well as special programs that can focus more specifically on her Civil War work or the founding of the American Red Cross.  All programs are roughly one hour in length and include a PowerPoint slideshow.  Email

SPEAKERS’ BUREAU OFFERING:  Mary Cassatt: American Impressionist and Thoroughly Modern Woman.  Mary Cassatt (1844-1926) defied the expectations of both her gender and class by not marrying and having children. Instead, she moved to Paris at age 22 and spent her entire life there painting into old age.  Her legacy is unique as she painted people as opposed to landscapes, which were the subjects of her French Impressionist colleagues.  She is especially remembered for her "Mother and Child" portraits.  Another very important part of Mary Cassatt's legacy was that she was instrumental in bringing Impressionism into America's major museum collections, which we still enjoy today.  Email

Mechanics Hall portraits
In 1998 the WWHP commissioned four internationally known artists to paint portraits of four important Worcester County women to hang in historic Mechanics Hall which at the time had portraits of only American male figures gracing the walls in its world-renowned concert hall.  Portraits of Abby Kelley Foster (1811-1887), Dorothea Dix (1802-1887), Clara Barton (1821-1912) and Lucy Stone (1818-1893), all painted in 19th century style hang in the Great Hall with thirty other portraits of significant historic individuals.
 "Worcester Women's History Heritage Trail" booklet
A 46-page booklet which identifies sites, individuals, organizations and events vital to understanding the major role that Worcester and Central Massachusetts played in the historic struggle for women's rights and racial equality. Cost: $12 per booklet.