Burlington County Freeholder Director Felicia Hopson announced the Women’s Advisory Council is hosting an event to celebrate 100 years of women’s suffrage. The year 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing and protecting women’s constitutional rights to vote.
“The performance, Letters to Aunt Hattie, celebrates women’s suffrage as well as the contribution of African American women to the movement,” said Freeholder Director Felicia Hopson. “This one-woman show is truly inspirational and allows us to reflect on and appreciate the legacies of women like Harriet Forten Purvis and Charlotte Forten Grimke who shaped the women’s rights movement.”
The event will be held on Feb. 22 from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Burlington County Library Auditorium on Pioneer Blvd. in Westampton. It is free and open to the public.
The play is written and performed by Gilletta McGraw based on the real-life activists Harriet Forten Purvis and Charlotte Forten Grimke.
Charlotte Forten, a young, bright student, begins writing letters to her favorite aunt, Aunt Hattie. Through these letters, Charlotte shares her thoughts during her studies and learns about some of the monumental accomplishments of the women in her family. During their back-and-forth correspondence, Charlotte grows in her activism and dedication to serve the oppressed and fight for equality.
Additionally, Harriet Forten Purvis was an African American abolitionist and first-generation suffragist. With her mother and sisters, she formed the Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society, which was the first biracial women’s abolitionist group. She also hosted anti-slavery events at her home and bravely ran an Underground Railroad station and fought against segregation.
“This is just one of the events that the Council will be hosting this year to celebrate 100 years of women’s suffrage,” concluded Freeholder Hopson. “We hope that everyone will join us. The anniversary gives us the opportunity to recognize those who have made a difference in history and empower younger generations.”
The Burlington County Women’s Advisory Council works to identify and address issues that affect women in Burlington County, raise public awareness of the special needs and roles of women, provide mentoring opportunities for women and enhance the quality of life for all women. For more information follow the council on Facebook at BurlingtonCountyWomen or visit Co.Burlington.NJ.US/263/Womens-Advisory-Council.