Mercy Scollay and the Lifelong Work of Mending

By Katie Turner Getty, Independent Researcher and Writer When Mercy Scollay’s presumptive fiancé, Dr. Joseph Warren, was killed at the Battle of Bunker Hill in June of 1775, she was thrust into emotional and financial turmoil that would both parallel and outlast the political upheaval of the American Revolution. As the caretaker and surrogate mother to Warren’s four children – … Read More

Who Are Cambridge Women?

Profiles included: Barbara Ackermann | Maria Baldwin | Ann Bookman | Sara Chapman Bull | Joyce Chen | Helen Lee Franklin | Lois Lilley Howe | Edith Lesley | Eva Neer | Mercy Scollay | Elizabeth Sullivan | Phyllis Wallace Our 2020 theme was Who Are Cambridge Women? But why spend a year discussing Cambridge women? Women’s stories are still largely … Read More

Phyllis Ann Wallace, A Leader for Equal Opportunity

Phyllis Wallace et all

By Annette LaMond* | S.M., MIT Sloan School of Management | Ph.D., Yale University  In 1975, Phyllis Wallace,1 then age 54, became the first black  woman – and first woman – to receive tenure at MIT’s Sloan  School of Management. When Phyllis arrived at MIT in 1972, she rented an apartment in a tall-for-Cambridge building between Central and Harvard Squares. … Read More

Eva Neer : My Neighbor, Groundbreaking Biochemist

By Annette LaMond* | S.M., MIT Sloan School of Management | Ph.D., Yale University In 1978, my husband and I moved to Brewster Village – an 1880s “development” of Queen Anne Victorians off Brattle Street. We soon began to meet our new neighbors. In our first six months, we were invited to not one, but two, celebrations to mark a … Read More

Revisiting the Cambridge Women’s Suffrage Movement

As we approach the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment next month, many of us have been mesmerized recently watching the American Experience production of “The Vote” on PBS. The movie tells the dramatic story the decades-long campaign waged by American women to win the right to vote. Historian and Cantabrigian Susan Ware, who served as an advisor to the movie, has been … Read More

A people’s mayor — remembering Barbara Ackermann

By Veer Mudambi July 10, 2020 Reproduced from Cambridge Chronicle & TAB with permission Barbara Ackermann, the first woman to serve as mayor of Cambridge, embodied the term “social justice warrior” in its truest form. Her decades-long fight for social equality defined her life in public service and her reputation for never backing down truly qualified her for the title. “She … Read More

Lois Lilley Howe: Pioneer Career Woman, Architect, Cambridge Citizen

By Larry Nathanson This article was originally published as a chapter in Cambridge in the Twentieth Century, edited by Daphne Abeel, Cambridge Historical Society, 2007.  Inspired by Cambridge Historical Society’s 2020 theme—Who are Cambridge Women?—the author has reviewed the manuscript and made a few updates. Introduction Growing up in the house at number three Gray Gardens East (GGE), I was totally … Read More

Recap: A History of Healing: Cambridge Women in Medicine

On Tuesday, July 21, CHS held our first digital History Café, “A History of Healing: Cambridge Women in Medicine.” Dr. Ellen S. More, Professor Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts School of Medicine, joined us for a discussion of the role of women in the medical profession in the 19th and early 20th centuries. This program is a part of our … Read More

Helen Lee Franklin

We recently learned about a fascinating story-map series, Stories of the Great Migration, on the National Parks of Boston’s website. Boston served as one of the many destinations for African American southern migrants searching for new economic opportunities and fleeing discrimination during the Great Migration. One of the articles in the National Parks of Boston’s series tells the story of Helen Lee … Read More