2009 Archive

DAR Presents Check

darsallywebClara Reed of the Fayetteville-Owahgena Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution presented a check to Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation Executive Director Sally Roesch Wagner for the restoration and preservation of the Gage Home.  The gift was ” in recognition to the Foundation for its efforts in the history and preservation of the Gage Home and preserving of the records of the past which give inspiration and courage for the generations and Matilda Joslyn Gage; for her call to unselfish service and a noble life well lived and to help keep alive an appreciation for historic preservation.” The official presentation happened Nov. 22 at the Wellington House.

Photo: Clara Reed, left, prepares to present a check to Gage Executive Director Sally Roesch Wagner.

Gage Home Rehabilitation Tour Video Online

This fall, Syracuse University student Katie Hudson created a video of a rehabilitation tour of the Gage Home by our Executive Director, Dr. Sally Roesch Wagner. To see the video, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NilkyBssVfk.

Celebration at the Wellington House

biddingliveauctionwebWe are still walking on air after a most successful fundraising auction at the Wellington House in Fayetteville Nov. 22. Guests bid on donations from feminist icons Gloria Steinem and Karen DeCrow, actresses Lily Tomlin and Mimi Kennedy and astronaut Larry DeLucas, and vacations from Cancun to Abiquiu to Myrtle Beach.

Sponsored by Tom Thomas and the Wellington House, the event featured live and silent auctions. The money raised will help fund day-to-day operations at the Gage Foundation.

The silent auction opened at 1 p.m. Auction coordinator Susan Goodier made welcoming remarks at 2 p.m., and then liveauctionwebDenise Butler gave a costumed performance in the role of Matilda Joslyn Gage. Next, Gage Executive Director Sally Roesch Wagner introduced Ruth Putter, who told the audience about her $50,000 challenge gift, which will match contributions made to the Gage Home Restoration Fund before the end of this year.  Clara Reed of the Daughters of the American Revolution presented a check to the Gage Foundation before the live auction opened at 3 p.m.

Gage Performance Reaches 20,000 Online

Matilda Joslyn Gage came to life for 23,000 people at the 2009 Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, Calif., Oct. 16. The audience of 3,000 at the Marin Convention Center were joined by another 20,000 people watching the webcast in satellite conferences around the country as Dr. Sally Roesch Wagner, Executive Director of the Gage Foundation, spoke Gage’s words of peace and social justice in character.

Bioneers is inspiring a shift to live on Earth in ways that honor the web of life, each other, and future generations. Bioneers are social and scientific innovators from all walks of life and disciplines. A nonprofit organization, Bioneers provides a forum and social hub for education about solutions presented through the Bioneers Conference and various programs.

To view the performance, click the arrow on the media player in the box below.

Actress Mimi Kennedy Headlines “Wonderful Weekend of Gage”

The Gage Foundation’s annual fundraising weekend, the Wonderful Weekend of Gage, featured the premiere reading of actor and playwright Mimi Kennedy’s one-woman show, “Waking Matilda.”

wakingmatildac_webKennedy premiered her show Saturday, October 10, at the Auburn Public Theater. “Waking Matilda” was written specifically for the Gage Foundation. Performances were at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., with a catered reception in between. The Gage Foundation co-sponsored the show with Planned Parenthood of the Rochester/Syracuse Region.

Kicking off the Wonderful Weekend was a very well-attended breakfast with author and philanthropist Helen LaKelly Hunt on Friday, October 9, at 8 a.m. at the Sheraton Syracuse University. Hunt was instrumental in the launch of the Women Moving Millions campaign and has been featured on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” The event was co-sponsored with the Women’s Fund of Central New York.

Authors Jill Tietjen and Beth Wilson did talks and book signings at the Auburn Public Theater on Saturday morning. Tietjen’s topic was “The Legacy of the Women on Whose Shoulders We Stand,” an overview of some of the abolitionists, suffragists, women’s rights activists, feminists, and civil rights activists who changed America. Wilson’s talk was titled “Beyond Destructive Relationships: Women as Agents of Change, Personally and Globally.” Her latest book, “He’s Just No Good for You,” has been optioned for a reality television series due to be released in the spring of 2010.

Deborah Hughes, the Executive Director of the Susan B. Anthony House,  and Sally Roesch Wagner, Executive Director of the Gage Foundation, dialogued about the 120-year-old argument between Anthony and Gage that changed the course of history. Their discussion, titled “From Friendship to Fighting to Friendship,” was moderated by Peter Wisby, Executive Director of the Seward House.

Breakfast With Celebrated Philanthropist Dr. Helen LaKelly Hunt

The Matilda Joslyn Gage Foundation and the Women’s Fund of Central New York were proud to present a talk by Dr. Helen LaKelly Hunt on Fri., Oct. 9, 2009, at the Sheraton University Hotel and Conference Center in Syracuse, N.Y. Founder of The Sister Fund, a private women’s fund dedicated to the social, political, economic, and spiritual empowerment of women and girls, Helen has worked on behalf of other women’s organizations for 25 years and was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame. With her sister Swanee Hunt, she catalyzed the Women Moving Millions campaign that is raising millions of dollars for women’s funds around the world.

Author of Faith and Feminism: A Holy Alliance, Helen has co-authored seven books and has been instrumental in the development of Imago Relationship Therapy. She has been featured on “Oprah.”

Local Church Features Gage Home on 2009 Holiday Ornament

For 56 years now, artisans at Christ Episcopal Church in Manlius, N.Y., have created handcrafted wooden ornaments to sell at their Christmas Mart. This year, the Matilda Joslyn Gage Home was included in the church’s set of original designs.

gagehomeornamentcechurch2These unique Christmas decorations were designed, cut, sanded, and then individually painted with acrylic. Each ornament passed through the hands of numerous individuals. Producing them was truly a team effort.

Ornaments were available for pickup Dec. 5 at the Christmas Mart at Christ Church, 407 E. Seneca St. (Rt. 173) in Manlius. The ornaments were available in limited numbers. All proceeds went to the Episcopal Church to fund community services.

Matilda Joslyn Gage in the New York Times

More U.S. women are controlling wealth than ever before, and many of them are using their economic power to assist other women, reports a recent New York Times article by Judy Belkin. “To appreciate the magnitude of this change,” Belkin writes, “go back 150 years or so to the women’s suffrage movement. Back to when one of its leaders, Matilda Joslyn Gage, lamented: ‘We have yet to hear of a woman of wealth who has left anything for the enfranchisement of her sex. Almost every daily paper heralds the fact of some large bequest to colleges, churches and charities by rich women, but it is proverbial that they never remember the woman suffrage movement that underlies in importance all others.’


Gage Foundation at the State Fair


The Gage Foundation had a booth in the Center of Progress Building at the New York State Fair Aug. 27 – Sept. 7. Thank you to all the volunteers who staffed the booth — and to the many interesting folks who stopped by.

Some of their comments:

“Wow, this has never been here [at the Fair] before!”

“Look – it’s in Fayetteville.”


“I grew up in Fayetteville near that house!”

“I didn’t know the house was so big and went back so far.”

“I’m so excited you’re doing something with that place.”

“Are you still digging?”

Also …

A couple who live on Matilda Joslyn Gage Drive in Cicero explained that a plaque telling who she was is placed on their street.

A couple who were very active in the Cicero Historical Society said hello and “Hey, Matilda’s ours! She lived in Cicero first!” then chatted about what a great man Matilda’s father was.

A woman who had “read that church and state book [Woman, Church and State, Gage’s magnum opus] a few years back” wanted to know what else she should know about Gage.

A huge THANK YOU to all our wonderful volunteers who have so energetically engaged the public at our booth. It’s people like you who make the Great New York State Fair so great! Hope you all have had fun being part of the show!

Photo: Volunteer Genevieve F. staffs the Gage booth at the fair Sat., Aug. 30. The free plastic construction hats were a big hit with fair-goers, who snatched them up quickly. Donated by Jane Albright of the International Wizard of Oz Club to celebrate the restoration work at the Gage Home, the hats are now perched happily atop the heads of children across Central New York.

2009 Railway Excursion

The Aug. 22 railway excursion from Camillus to Seneca Falls, N.Y., was a rip-roaring success! The trip sold out completely. Nearly 200 passengers enjoyed onboard presentations by costumed historical enactors,  a program at the Women’s Rights National Historical Park in Seneca Falls, a scavenger hunt with lots of prizes, a complimentary wine tasting, and more.

groupphototripend09webThe Gage Foundation presented the trip in cooperation with Finger Lakes Scenic Railway. Special thanks to volunteers Diana Green and Julia Bliven for coordinating the event so skillfully, and to the talented enactors: Denise Butler (19th-century Fayetteville citizen Mrs. Justus Wells), Renee-Noelle Felice (Matilda Joslyn Gage), Vanessa Johnson (Dr. Sarah Loguen Fraser), Jody Luce (dress reformer and suffragist Elizabeth Smith Miller), and Diane Palmer (anti-suffragist Helen Kendrick Johnson).

Photo, left to right: Heidi Stephens, Denise Butler, Jody Luce, Renee-Noelle Felice, Julia Bliven, Diane Palmer, Vanessa Johnson, and Julie Fishman.

Click here to watch a video montage of images from the excursion.

Scouting Blossoms at Gage Home

urndedication6-26-09If you’ve driven along East Genesee Street in Fayetteville lately, perhaps you’ve noticed the new urn in the front yard of the Gage Home. It’s a large cast-iron beauty, similar to one that graced the yard in the late 1800s when the Gages and Baums used to spend summer days catching cool breezes on the porch. The new urn holds bunches of cheerful purple petunias, crowned by a rose bush that blooms with pink petals.

This addition was made possible thanks to a grant from the Rotary Club of Eastwood and the efforts of two local Girls Scouts from Troop 151, Beth Bannar and Katherine Millet (with some input from their garden-savvy moms, Darlene Bannar and Leslie Cameron). In May, the girls arrived at the Gage Home with a full complement of garden tools and planted the urn so it was ready to be enjoyed by neighbors who gathered along the street to watch Fayetteville’s annual Memorial Day parade.

The girls returned to the Gage property this July for a different sort of gardening project. They made a clearing in the wooded area behind the Gage offices at 109 Walnut Street, the first stage of development for a future Forest of Forgotten Feminists. The girls and several of their family members removed brush and debris (it’s amazing what a chainsaw and an earthmover can do!) , and now are working out their plans for paths and seating areas.

Photo: Urn dedication on June 26, 2009. Pictured left to right are Richard Silverman, past president of the Rotary Club of Eastwood; Girl Scouts Katherine Millet and Beth Bannar; and Sally Roesch Wagner, Executive Director of the Gage Foundation).

Gage Home in Ms. Magazine


The Spring 2009 issue of Ms. magazine included a short news article on the Matilda Joslyn Gage home. Click the following link to read the article in pdf format: Gage Home in Ms. magazine.

Forgotten Foremother

By Elisabeth Garber-Paul, RH Reality Check

Nearly 150 years after their radical ideas helped to begin the first wave of feminism, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton are still household names. However Matilda Joslyn Gage, the outspoken journalist and early advocate for civil rights who worked closely with them on the day to day operations of the National Woman Suffrage Association, has largely been left out of the story.


2009 Gage Essay Contest Winner

Molly Linhorst, a junior at Fayetteville-Manlius High School, was the winning writer in this year’s Matilda Joslyn Gage Essay Contest.

Molly“Silence and fear of criticism are opponents of free thought and reform,” wrote Linhorst. “Matilda Joslyn Gage, in her speech at the National Woman’s Rights Convention of 1852, encouraged women to expect criticism for their involvement in the feminist movement and to bear it with unwavering confidence. Gage’s courage led to an admirable life devoted to change. Gage is certainly a role model to today’s generation of young women, including myself. “


She’s HOT:
Matilda Joslyn Gage & The Evolution of Hip Hop!

As part of a women’s studies course titled “History of the Suffrage Movement: Through the Eyes of Matilda Joslyn Gage,” Syracuse University sophomore Jessica Santana decided to create a blog as her final project.


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