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How to Use the Images

 

Inquiry Question

Historical Context

Map

Readings

Photo 1
Drawing 1 & 2
Photos 4 & 5
Photo 6

Activities

Table of
Contents




Visual Evidence

Photo 2: Mary McLeod Bethune (with back to camera) speaking at Council House dedication, October 15, 1944.[Photo 2] with link to larger version.
(Mary McLeod Bethune Council House NHS. Photographer unknown.)

Photo 3: Eleanor Roosevelt speaking at Council House dedication, October 15, 1944.[Photo 3] with link to larger image.
(Mary McLeod Bethune Council House NHS. Photographer unknown.)

During its annual conference in October 1944, NCNW held a ceremony to dedicate the new headquarters at 1318 Vermont Avenue. Major donors and program speakers sat in a semi-circle on the lawn just outside the house. NCNW members and guests filled the rest of the lawn and spilled into the street, which had been closed off by police for the event. One of the speakers proclaimed, "This house has been obtained by the prayers and sacrifice of a few, but the devotion, idealism and ambition which surround it will spread to many; and the inspired efforts which it shall generate in years to come will be felt around the world."1

Questions for Photos 2 and 3

1. Why was this an important day for Bethune and NCNW? Where had NCNW members conducted business prior to the dedication of the Council House?

2. Based on Photo 2, why do you think this ceremony was held outside instead of inside the house?

3. What might Eleanor Roosevelt's presence have meant to NCNW members?

1 Elaine M. Smith, Mary McLeod Bethune and the National Council of Negro Women: Historic Resource Study (Alabama State University, 2003), 219.

* The small images on this screen will print poorly. You can obtain a larger version of Photo 2 and Photo 3, but be aware that the files will take as much as 50 seconds to load with a 28.8K modem.

 

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