Posted by & filed under Guest Posts, Hot Docs, Keeping Tabs, Special Days.


Protest against SB 6, the Texas "bathroom bill"

The U.S. federal government response in recent years to matters related to transgender rights has skewed against recognition, dignity, and equality. 2016 started with an onslaught of proposed legislation and public policy measures aimed at negating the basic civil rights of transgender individuals in the United States. These developments have endangered both the physical health and mental well-being of the transgender community. Most notably the “bathroom bills,” which became headline news for months, inspired anger from the right and outrage from the left. However, in 2020, a landmark case emerged, Bostock v. Clayton County, in which the Supreme Court held that Title XII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act protects employees from discrimination based on gender identity (as well as sexual orientation). Given this case, as well as transgender military personnel recently receiving invitations to have a voice in military policy that directly affect them by providing testimony before the House of Representatives, the next four years appear to hold a promise of a better future for the transgender community in relation to the government. 

Below is a bibliography of titles, separated by subject, from the UNT Libraries, both from the catalog and from our Digital Libraries Government Documents collection that highlight public policy affecting transgender individuals from 2016–2020. 

Education  

    • This document covers the U.S. Dept. of Education efforts to protect transgender students.  
    • This report reviews whether Title IX, which prohibits discrimination “on the basis of sex” in federally funded education programs or activities, reaches claims raised by transgender students. 

Employment 

  • The Equality Act (H.R. 5): Ensuring the Right to Learn and Work Free from Discrimination: Hearing before the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Human Services, Committee on Education and Labor, House of Representatives, One Hundred Sixteenth Congress, First Session, Hearing Held in Washington, D.C. (2019). Available from https://discover.library.unt.edu/catalog/b6376452 
    • Transcripts from a legislative hearing on the Equality Act to guarantee and expand civil rights protections for transgender (and LGBQ+) Americans, pros and cons presented in testimony.  

Housing 

    • Page 12 of this report notes that the Fair Housing Act does not expressly protect individuals from discrimination based on gender identity (or sexual orientation); further, it notes the challenges faced by transgender individuals’ ability to gain access to single-sex shelters in accordance with their gender identity.  

Military Service  

    • Page 16 of this report, “Table 2. Who Is Required to Register for the Selective Service?” indicates that, “Individuals who are born female and changed their gender to male,” are not required to register for selective service, yet, those “who are born male and change their gender to female,” are required to register for selective service.    
    • This is a handbook to aid transgender Service members with their transition, assist commanders with rules and regulations, and teach Service members of policies. 
    • Page 37–40 of this report has a section focused on “Transgender Service” highlighting some of the 2016/2017 policies affecting “transgender recruits.” 
    • This memorandum to the President recommends that the DOD adopt policies disqualifying “transgender persons with a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria” and those “who require or have undergone gender transition” from military service. Further, “transgender persons without a history or diagnosis of gender dysphoria, who are otherwise qualified for service, may serve, like all other Service members, in their biological sex,” because, “by its very nature, military service requires sacrifice.” 
    • This report provides an overview of policies affecting transgender servicemembers in 2016/2017, cost of care for those servicemembers, and includes links to some existing research on these concerns.  
    • This report discusses the controversy regarding transgender individuals serving in the military, President Trump’s memoranda on the subject, and the four lawsuits challenging the President’s memorandums.  

Additional Resources

More information on the above topics can be found in the following databases: 

    • Provides access to information from over 350 public policy think tanks, nongovernmental organizations, research institutes, university centers, advocacy groups, and other entities.  
    • The Congressional Research Service (CRS) works exclusively for the United States Congress, providing policy and legal analysis to committees and Members of both the House and Senate, regardless of party affiliation. As a legislative branch agency within the Library of Congress, CRS has been a valued and respected resource on Capitol Hill for more than a century. CRS is well-known for analysis that is authoritative, confidential, objective and nonpartisan.  

 

Article by Julie Leuzinger, with contributions from Coby Condrey and Clark Pomerleau.

Photo of opponents of Texas “bathroom bill” (SB 6) protesting at the state Capitol in Austin by Eric Gay/Associated Press. From “Go all out to Go All In for Advocacy,” by Tammy Nash, in Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 33, No. 45, Ed. 1 Friday, March 17, 2017. University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections

Posted by & filed under Recommendations, Special Days.

 

First Landing of Columbus on the Shores of the New World, published in 1892, the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ 1492 landing at San Salvador. Source: Library of Congress

 

The second Monday of October traditionally marks the celebration of Indigenous Peoples’ Day in America. This tradition, however, is a fairly new one, and it isn’t officially recognized nationwide by that name.

 

Most Americans recognize the October 12 federal holiday as Columbus Day. This day marks the anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s landfall in 1492 on what is now known as the island of San Salvador in the Bahamas. The 400th anniversary of this landing became a one-time national holiday in 1892, when President Benjamin Harrison proclaimed it in an effort to calm diplomatic tensions with Italy, following a mass lynching of Italian-Americans in New Orleans. The campaign to establish Columbus Day as an annual holiday continued into the 20th century, and in 1968 it finally became an official U.S. federal holiday.

 

While Columbus Day had developed as a reaction to ethnic discrimination, the story of Christopher Columbus himself was problematic. He had not been just an explorer; he had been a brutal colonizer. Modern historians have brought to light accounts of enslavement, torture, sexual violence, and murder of native people, all conducted under Columbus’s rule as the governor of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola. Additional mass deaths had resulted from unlivable conditions on slave ships, famine, and communicable diseases such as smallpox. By 1506 — just 14 years after his arrival — the native population of the island had been reduced to one-third of its original numbers. Columbus is considered by many to have set in motion a centuries-long pattern of genocide of indigenous populations in the Western Hemisphere.

 

In the late 20th century, there began a movement to replace Columbus Day with a holiday celebrating the resiliency and survival of Native American people. South Dakota was the first U.S. state to establish such a holiday, called Native American Day, in 1989. In 1992, on the 500th anniversary of Columbus’s landing, the city of Berkeley, California established the first Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Since then, numerous American cities and some states have adopted the holiday. Some locations observe both Columbus Day and Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

 

One way to celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day is to take time to learn about the lives and cultures of indigenous people in North America throughout the last few centuries. The UNT Libraries’ Government Documents Collection is a treasure trove of historical resources for that purpose. We’ve included here a list of recommendations from our staff.

 

Indian Reading Series

Issued by the U.S. Department of Education in the 1970s and 1980’s, this is a collection of culturally relevant stories written by Native American authors and illustrated by Native American artists. The booklets are designed for school-aged children, as educational resources for reading and language development. The stories were authenticated by participating Native American tribes and field-tested with over 1200 schoolchildren, both Native and non-Native.

 

Browse the whole Indian Reading Series collection online

For access to print editions, please contact us at govinfo@unt.edu.

 

The Problem of Indian Administration (a.k.a. The Meriam Report)

Published in 1928, this report provides an overview of the governmental and religious bureaucracies that impacted the lives of Native Americans in the U.S. after the Indian Wars. Data for the report was collected by field work in 95 different jurisdictions, including reservations, Indian agencies, hospitals, schools, and communities where Native Americans had migrated.

Topics include health, living conditions, causes of poverty, compulsory boarding schools, missionary activities, and the work of the government. The authors of the report provide detailed recommendations for managing economic and social conditions within those jurisdictions.

 

Browse the full Meriam report online or request the print copy

 

Handbook of North American Indians

This is a 20 volume encyclopedia; to date, 15 volumes have been issued by the Smithsonian Institution. When completed, the Handbook will give an encyclopedic summary of what is known about the prehistory, history, and cultures of the aboriginal peoples of North America who lived north of the urban civilizations of central Mexico. Each volume in this set is independent of the other volumes and contains separate chapters on all the tribes within a geographic area.

Most of the contributing authors of this series are scholars, anthropologists, and historians; but the articles are written for the general public, as well as for teachers, students, and researchers.

This set is best known for its striking historical portraits (painted and photographed) of indigenous people, many in traditional dress.

 

The volumes are not available online, but print copies are available upon request at the Libraries. For access, please contact us at govinfo@unt.edu. Our catalog record provides some information about the individual volumes.

 

Bulletins and Annual Reports of the Bureau of American Ethnology

The Bulletin of the Bureau of Ethnology (later called the Bureau of American Ethnology) is a series that began in 1887 and continued through 1971. Each bulletin documents specific aspects of indigenous American history, culture, and language. Notable topics include (but are not restricted to) archeology, art, mythology, music and dance, linguistics, and contemporary culture in the early-to-mid 20th century.

The Annual Reports of the Bureau cover similar topics but also include administrative or political topics such as frontier wars, reservations, land cessions, and boundaries. Later reports focus more heavily on archeological research.

 

Bulletins no. 1–24 from the Bureau of Ethnology and the Bulletins 25–200 from the Bureau of American Ethnology are available online from the Biodiversity Heritage Library Web site.

Annual Reports for the years 1879 to 1894 from the Bureau of Ethnology and Annual Reports for the years 1895 to 1964 from the Bureau of American Ethnology are also available online from the Biodiversity Heritage Library Web site.

For access to print editions of the Bulletins or Annual Reports, please contact us at govinfo@unt.edu.

   

 

Article written by Betty Monterroso, with contributions from Bobby Griffith.

Posted by & filed under Get Help, Local Doings.

picture of Gateway Center

The official Election Day is Tuesday, November 3 this year, but UNT students, faculty, and staff who live in Denton County will have an opportunity to beat the crowds and vote early in the 2020 General Election without even leaving the Denton campus. Other voters from the community who are registered in Denton County will also be allowed to vote early on the UNT Denton campus.

Time and Place

From Tuesday, October 13 to Friday, October 30, the University of North Texas, in cooperation with the Denton County Elections Administration, will host an early voting location at the UNT Gateway Center, located at 801 North Texas Blvd. in Denton, rooms 43/47. Visitors can park on campus for a fee.

The Gateway Center voting area will be open at the following times:  

Tuesday–Saturday October 13-17 7 a.m.-7 p.m.
Sunday October 18 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Monday-Saturday October 19-24 7 a.m.-7 p.m.
Sunday October 25 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Monday-Friday October 26-30 7 a.m.-7 p.m.

All days, times, and locations for early voting in Denton County can be seen in a printable Denton County Early Voting guide. (Note that registered Denton County residents may vote at any of these locations during the early voting period, but on November 3 you can only vote at the location designated for your precinct.)

Candidates and Issues

A Voter’s Guide from the League of Women Voters of Denton is available to help you become a more responsible voter by learning about the candidates and issues being voted on.

You can get a sample ballot by entering your identifying information in the Denton County Voter Lookup database.

Are You Registered to Vote?

To find out if you are registered in Denton County, go to the Denton County Voter Lookup database.

To find out if you are registered in Texas, go to the Secretary of State’s Vote Texas site.

If you are registered in another Texas county you cannot vote in Denton County, but you can request a mail-in ballot from your home county election administration if you are not going to be in the area during the voting period.

If you think you should be registered, but don’t know for sure or have questions, contact the Texas Secretary of State at 1-800-252-VOTE.

Don’t Forget Your ID

In 2011 the Texas Legislature passed a Texas Voter ID Law that required certain specific forms of identification in order to vote in a Texas election.

On August 10, 2016, a federal district court entered an order that partially ruled against the constitutionality of this law. The court order relaxed the voter identification requirements for all elections held in Texas after August 10, 2016 until further notice.

These are the acceptable forms of photo ID:

With the exception of the U.S. citizenship certificate, the photo ID must be current or have expired no more than four years ago.

If you don’t have one of these forms of ID, you may fill out a Reasonable Impediment Declaration at the polling place and present it with one of the following forms of ID:

  • Certified birth certificate (must be an original)
  • Current utility bill
  • Bank statement
  • Government check
  • Paycheck
  • Any government document with your name and an address (original required if it contains a photograph)

Do You Want to Know More?

Visit the UNT Libraries’ Voting and Civic Engagement guide for a variety of useful resources.

Information about voter registration, voting rights, special needs, and other issues related to voting in Texas is available at the Texas Secretary of State’s VoteTexas.gov page.

Learn more about the upcoming elections at the Denton County Elections Administration Web site and the Texas Elections Division website.

Email govinfo@unt.edu if you have any questions.

original post by Bobby Griffith, updated by Jennifer Rowe

Photo of UNT Gateway Center by UNT/URCM Photography.

Posted by & filed under Local Doings, Special Days.

"The Constitution," mural by Barry Faulkner

During the hot, muggy summer of 1787, a Grand Convention was called together at the Pennsylvania State House (now called Independence Hall) in Philadelphia for the purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation, which had proved a highly unsatisfactory document for holding the United States together during the first 13 years of the young nation’s existence. While waiting for enough delegates to arrive to make a quorum, James Madison took the initiative of drawing up an initial proposal to get the discussion going: the so-called Virginia Plan.


Benjamin Fraklin in a local pub

The delegates had a complex, delicate task ahead, and precautions were taken to insure secrecy so that everyone would be able to speak his mind honestly and change his mind freely as discussions progressed. Heavy curtains were drawn, and windows were nailed shut. The notoriously bibulous and garrulous Benjamin Franklin was accompanied during public excursions by chaperones charged with making sure he wouldn’t inadvertently reveal too much. James Madison took extensive notes of the debates. Over the next four months the delegates sweated, argued, and struggled with the task of devising a system of government adequate to meet the needs of a new nation. They didn’t just revise the Articles of Confederation; rather, they produced an entirely new document from scratch, perhaps overstepping the bounds of their original mandate.


James Madision, Father of the Constitution

On September 17, 1787 the final draft of the Constitution of the United States was signed by 39 of the 55 delegates. The document was then sent to the states for ratification while James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay campaigned for acceptance of the new constitution in a series of articles and essays that were eventually compiled and published under the title The Federalist. Their arguments—plus the promise of a Bill of Rights enumerating certain personal freedoms not explicitly provided for in the Constitution—proved persuasive, and the new Constitution went into effect on June 21, 1788, after New Hampshire had become the ninth state to ratify it.


First page of the Constitution of the United States

In commemoration of these momentous events, Congress has designated September 17 as Constitution Day. All schools that receive federal funds have been charged with providing educational programming related to the Constitution on or near September 17.

Constitution Day 2020 at UNT

Join us for Constitution Day 2020, 100 years after the passage of the 19th amendment, for an informative remembrance of the 1920 amendment to the Constitution granting women the right to vote. Tune in, virtually, as our three guest speakers discuss the suffrage movement, consider the impact of the women’s vote in U.S. politics, and reflect on the future of women in politics.

Guest Speakers:

Pre-registration is required, so reserve your seat in the live-stream at bit.ly/UNTCONDAY2020.




Article by Bobby Griffith.

Photos of the U.S. Constitution and Barry Faulkner mural from National Archives and Records Administration.

Benjamin Franklin cartoon from NT Daily (September 17, 1987).

Photo of James Madison quote from the Library of Congress James Madison Memorial Building in Washington, DC.

Posted by & filed under Special Days.

19th Amendment exhibit at the Eagle Commons Library.

One hundred years ago today, at 8:00 a.m. on August 26, 1920, without fanfare, in the privacy of his own home and unseen by the press or the public, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby formally certified Tennessee’s ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, bringing to a culmination a 72-year, non-violent campaign to acknowledge women’s right to vote.

The language was simple:

The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.  Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

Earlier Attempts at Woman Suffrage

Today it is difficult to comprehend a world where it’s considered perfectly normal for people to own other people, while the concept of women voting is considered the height of absurdity, but for decades even the staunchest advocates for women’s rights often disagreed on whether it was appropriate for women to demand the right to vote.

On March 31, 1776, as her husband John was in Philadelphia arguing the cause of American independence from Great Britain, Abigail Adams sent him the following forward-thinking suggestion:


“…and by the way in the new Code of Laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make I desire you would Remember the Ladies, and be more generous and favourable to them than your ancestors.… If perticuliar care and attention is not paid to the Laidies we are determined to foment a Rebelion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any Laws in which we have no voice, or Representation.”


Although John Adams often depended on his wife’s wise counsel, this time his response was shortsighted and frivolous:


“As to your extraordinary Code of Laws, I cannot but laugh.… Depend upon it, We know better than to repeal our Masculine systems. Altho they are in full Force, you know they are little more than Theory…, and in Practice you know We are the subjects. We have only the Name of Masters, and rather than give up this, which would compleatly subject Us to the Despotism of the Peticoat, I hope General Washington, and all our brave Heroes would fight.”


American women continued to have no right to vote even after African-Americans were emancipated from slavery by the Thirteenth Amendment and guaranteed full citizenship and equal protection by the Fourteenth Amendment, which in 1868 introduced the word “male” into the Constitution—for the first time, and in connection with voting rights—arousing the ire of Susan B. Anthony, among others.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony

In 1869, Anthony and her long-time friend and collaborator Elizabeth Cady Stanton split from the American Equal Rights Association over support of the Fifteenth Amendment, which would prohibit denial of suffrage based on race, and co-founded the National Woman Suffrage Association (NWSA), which worked for women’s suffrage, divorce reform, and equal pay for women. Although they both supported universal suffrage, and Stanton had in fact included it in her Declaration of Sentiments introduced at the 1948 Seneca Falls Convention, which is often held to be the place where the women’s rights and women’s suffrage movements officially began in the United States, both opposed ratification of the Fifteenth Amendment because it failed to recognize women as citizens with voting rights.

In 1871, the iconoclastic Victoria Woodhull became the first woman to address a congressional committee, arguing before the House Judiciary Committee that women already had the right to vote because that right was guaranteed to all citizens by the Fourteenth and Fifteenth amendments. The chairman objected, “Madam, you are no citizen—you are a woman!” and the committee tabled her request. Still, her speech attracted so many suffragists and reporters that, in one reporter’s words, “Washington became one grand conversational salon.”

Victoria Woodhull

In 1872, after ratification of the Fifteenth amendment, Anthony was arrested for voting illegally. She fought the charges unsuccessfully and was fined $100—a debt she refused to pay. Because the judge declined to sentence her to prison time, she lost her right to file an appeal, which would have allowed the suffrage movement to take the question of women’s voting rights to the Supreme Court.

From 1892 to 1900, Susan B. Anthony served as president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association (created by a merger of the NWSA with the competing American Woman Suffrage Association). In this role she canvassed the county giving speeches, gathering petition signatures, and lobbying Congress in support of women’s suffrage.

Sadly, neither Anthony nor Stanton saw the culmination of all their hard work, although they never lost faith that their vision would eventually come to pass. In 1902 the now elderly Susan B. made these remarks about the matter:


“If I could live another century! I do so want to see the fruition of the work for women in the past century. There is so much yet to be done, I see so many things I would like to do and say, but I must leave it for the younger generation. We old fighters have prepared the way, and it is easier than it was fifty years ago when I first got into the harness. The young blood, fresh with enthusiasm and with all the enlightenment of the twentieth century, must carry on the work.”


A New Generation

Carrie Chapman Catt was one of the members of that “younger generation.” A schoolteacher and newspaper editor, Catt took over leadership of the NWSA after Susan B. Anthony retired in 1900. Catt developed the NWSA’s “Winning Plan,” a conservative, incremental approach to women’s suffrage that focused on winning voting rights in at least 36 states, the number needed to ratify a federal amendment.

Carrie Chapman Catt   Alice Paul

Alice Paul represented a more militant approach. After earning her master’s degree at the University of Pennsylvania, Paul had moved to London to continue her studies and there joined the Women’s Social and Political Union (WPSU), a militant British suffrage organization led by Emmeline Pankhurst and her daughter Christabel. From them Paul learned tactics and techniques of direct action such as organizing huge marches, staging extravagant, theatrical demonstrations, and using acts of disruption and civil disobedience to draw attention to her cause. This unbridled approach worked brilliantly at drawing attention to the movement, but it did not please the more conservative Catt, and the two leaders often clashed. Alice Paul and her co-suffragists also often clashed with the police.

Inez Milholland

On March 3, 1913—one day before Woodrow Wilson’s inauguration—the Women’s Suffrage Parade, organized by Alice Paul, took place in Washington, D.C. Inez Milholland—a suffragist, labor lawyer, and socialist who worked for prison reform, peace, and equality for African-Americans—led the parade wearing a white cape and seated on a white horse. Milholland campaigned unceasingly despite deteriorating health, and at the age of 30 collapsed in public uttering the words “Mr. President, how long must women wait for liberty?” then died in a hospital shortly thereafter. She was convinced that women’s unique traits qualified them to become “housecleaners for the nation” whose votes could help alleviate social evils such as crowded tenements, sweatshops, poverty, hunger, prostitution, and child mortality. Today many of these conditions still exist, as do voter suppression, unequal pay, and many other violations of the most basic human rights.

In January 1917 a group of women organized by Alice Paul became the first group to ever protest outside the White House. Known as the Silent Sentinels, they picketed several hours a day, six days a week, for almost two and a half years, never speaking a word, but silently urging President Wilson with their signs to support a suffrage amendment. Many of them were beaten, arrested, and jailed. They would continue their protests in jail by staging hunger strikes, which often resulted in more beatings and being force fed through a tube stuck up the nose. The resulting public outrage and outcry over their treatment is often credited with turning the tide toward support of women’s suffrage, and on June 4, 1919, Congress passed a joint resolution proposing a Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution.

Silent Sentinels

By the middle of 1920, 35 of the required 36 states had voted to ratify the amendment, four other states (Connecticut, Vermont, North Carolina and Florida) declined to put it to a vote, and all the other states except Tennessee had rejected it outright. The deciding vote therefore came down to the Tennessee state legislature, and that vote now stood at a tie, with a single vote remaining.

Harry T. Burn

At the tender age of 24, Tennessee state representative Harry T. Burn from the McMinn County district suddenly found himself facing the responsibility of casting the deciding vote to ratify or reject the Nineteenth Amendment at the Tennessee General Assembly in 1920. The red rose on his lapel, as well as his past “nay” votes on the issue, confirmed his anti-suffragist position. He had already voted in favor of tabling the amendment, but that vote had also ended in a tie and did not carry. What the public did not see, however, as he stood up to declare his vote was a seven-page handwritten letter from his mother, Phoebe Ensminger Burn (known to her friends and family as “Febb”), urging him to “be a good boy” and “help Mrs. ‘Thomas Catt’ with her ‘Rats.’” (“Is she the one that put rat in ratification,” she further teased.) Along with the letter, Burn had hidden a yellow suffragist rose inside his jacket pocket. It was a history-making change of heart as Burn’s “aye” unexpectedly reverberated in the Senate chamber.

Letter from Febb Burn

Fourteen years after Susan B. Anthony’s death, the act named after her was ratified as the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Though she did not live to see the results of her life’s work, Susan B. had played a crucial role in securing female suffrage at the national level.

On February 15, 1921 (Susan B. Anthony’s birthday), sculptor Adelaide Johnson’s monumental statue “The Women’s Movement” was unveiled in the Capitol Rotunda. The monument contains portraits of Susan B. Anthony, Lucretia Mott, and Elisabeth Cady Stanton, copied from busts the artist had sculpted earlier when the subjects were still alive. In this monument, they arise out of a block of rough-hewn Carrara marble—a symbol of the unfinished struggle for women’s rights—and a vague, abstract shape rises behind the three women to represent all the other women who might continue their fight.

Portrait Monument

In 1979, the U.S. Treasury minted the Susan B. Anthony dollar, making her the first female to be represented on U.S. currency.

Susan B. Anthony silver dollar

Unfinished Business

Passage of the Nineteenth Amendment did not automatically secure the right to vote for all American women:

  • Native American women were not considered U.S. citizens—except under certain special circumstances, such as being married to a white man—and therefore could not vote.
  • African-Americans were prevented from voting by poll taxes, literacy tests, threats of violence, and other tools of voter suppression.
  • Discriminatory immigration laws prevented many Chinese women (the Page Act) or Chinese men and women (the Chinese Exclusion Act) from becoming U.S. citizens, and in 1924 the Johnson-Reed Act excluded all Asians from immigrating to the U.S.
  • The 1907 Expatriation Act declared that female U.S. citizens who married non-citizens were no longer Americans.

  • Pioneers such as Mabel Ping-Hua Lee and Zitkala-Ša help pave the way for many of these women to win the right to vote years—sometimes decades—after the Nineteen Amendment was passed, and some still fight today against laws that discriminate against women and minorities, such as felony disenfranchisement laws and voter I.D. laws.

    Mabel Ping-Hua Lee   Zitkala-Ša

    On Valentine’s Day 1920, six months before the Nineteenth Amendment was ratified, Carrie Chapman Catt founded the League of Women Voters, a non-partisan, non-sectarian organization aimed at educating voters on political issues.

    After helping to secure women’s suffrage, Alice Paul penned the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) with Crystal Eastman in 1923. While middle-class women were largely supportive of this amendment, working-class women pointed out that passage could result in losing certain protections regarding working conditions and hours of employment. Like the Nineteenth Amendment, this one was short and succinct. (It was also misspelled.)

    Equal Rights Amendment

    The ERA was reintroduced in the early 1970s, but as of 2020—nearly a century after it was introduced—it has not been ratified.

    One hundred years after women won the right to vote, the battle for equality is still not over. We hope you have been inspired by this story and will consider how you can continue the fight for the rights of women and other oppressed people in your own neighborhood and throughout the world. What part will you play? As you join the fight for liberty, justice, and equality, let these words from Henry Alford’s hymn “Forward Be Our Watchword”—carried on a banner by Inez Milholland at her first suffrage parade, then later displayed during her memorial—serve as inspiration:

    Forward, out of error,
    Leave behind the night;
    Forward through the darkness,
    Forward into light!

    Woman holding banner at Inez Milholland memorial.



    Author: Bobby Griffith

    Image credits:

    Photo of Eagle Commons Library Woman Suffrage exhibit by Bobby Griffith.

    Portrait of Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, c.1880, from 19C American Women in a New Nation.

    Photo of Victoria Woodhull courtesy of Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives.

    Susan B. Anthony silver dollar, Heritage Auctions Lot 1449, 29 April 2010.

    Photo of Carrie Chapman Catt, courtesy of Library of Congress Manuscript Division, available under the digital ID mnwp.149004.

    Photo of Alice Paul courtesy of Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division.

    Photo of Silent Sentinels courtesy of Library of Congress American Memory Collection.

    Photo of Inez Milholland courtesy of George Grantham Bain Collection, Libary of Congress, Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-ppmsc-00031.

    Photo of Harry T. Burn courtesy of Tennessee Virtual Archive.

    Photo of letter from Febb Burn courtesy of Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection, Knox County Public Library.

    Portrait of Mabel Ping-Hua Lee (1896–1966). New-York Endowment Tribune, April 13, 1912. Chronicling America, National for the Humanities and the Library of Congress.

    Photo of Zitkala-Ša by Gertrude Kasebier, courtesy of the Smithsonian Institution.

    Photo of woman holding banner in memory of Inez Milholland, uploaded from Shorpy.com, a photo-blog site specializing in vintage photography. Source url: 5414.

    Posted by & filed under Special Days.

    image

    There is no doubt that 2020 has been a bumpy year. Current conditions, including the ongoing pandemic and an election looming on the horizon, ensure the year will go out with a bang. It is an opportune moment to pause and observe August 25th as National Kiss and Make Up Day.

    When relationships hit a rough patch, it can be difficult to know how to work past our differences. Even famous advice columnists and sisters Dear Abby and Ann Landers struggled to along. Yet today seems as good a day as any to put fourth the effort to mend a relationship worth having. Send flowers, make a phone call, write a text, agree to disagree, or whatever feels appropriate to make amends. 2020 needs all the help it can get, and hopefully we all escape with healthier and stronger relationships despite our social or physical distances.

    However, don’t feel bad if all your relationships aren’t perfect. There are endless examples in history of people who really needed to kiss and make up. Here is just one example:

    Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams

    Like many new relationships, Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams initially held good opinions of one another. However, that all changed after a tight presidential election in 1824. Jackson and his crowd determined that President Adams must have made an underhand deal with Henry Clay that allowed Adams to win the presidency. Many felt that Adams had made a “corrupt bargain” and ill-will leaked into the 1828 presidential race between Adams and Jackson, which played out fully in the court of public opinion.

    Both sides were not above slinging mud onto the other candidate. Coffin Handbills were circulated to illustrate alleged misdeeds of Jackson and included allegations of being a murdering adulterous cannibal.

    image

    http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.rbc/rbpe.18601400

    Supplemental account of some of the bloody deeds of General Jackson, being a supplement to the “Coffin handbill.”

    Library of Congress. Rare Book and Special Collections Division, Printed and Ephemera Collection.

    Jacksonian newspapers continued to support the idea of a “corrupt bargain’ between Adams and Clay and alleged that President Adams was a pimp for the Czar of Russia while serving as a diplomat there.

    image

    https://www.loc.gov/resource/ds.00847/

    Akin, J. (1828) The pedlar and his pack or the Desperate effort, an over balance, United States, 1828. [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress.

    Bad relations between Adams and Jackson continued after the elections. Jackson believed the treatment of his wife during the elections played a part in her death prior to Jackson taking office and thus did not make the traditional visit to outgoing President Adams. In return, President Adams did not attend President Jackson’s inauguration.

    Despite efforts from friends on both sides, the two presidents never kissed and made up. Each man continued to carry a poor opinion of the other for the rest of their days. President Adams was a diplomat, fluent in several languages, and a sometimes poet, but despite his skill he never found the way or the words to make amends with President Jackson.

    Hopefully on this day your quarrels a little easier and you can find the words to smooth out hurt feelings or clear up a misunderstanding. If you need inspiration, the Library of Congress has the sheet music for “Kiss and make it up” and we hope it helps!

    image

    https://www.loc.gov/resource/sm1872.02208.0/?sp=2

    Kiss and make it up

    Sheet Music. print | 1 score | From: Music Copyright Deposits, 1870-1885 (Microfilm M 3500) Also available through the Library of Congress Web Site as facsimile page images.

    This post was authored by Erica Kaufman.

    Posted by & filed under Get Help.

     

     

    Drastic times call for drastic research support.

     

    My name is Brea Henson. I’m the Political Science Librarian at the UNT Libraries. This fall I will be working remotely, but I aim to continue to provide excellent research services to you. Students and faculty can request Zoom research appointments with me to address their research needs.

     

    To schedule an appointment, email me at brea.henson@unt.edu or use the LibCal scheduling option on my profile at https://library.unt.edu/people/brea-henson/.

       

    No matter if campus is open or we are issued another stay-at-home order, I am here to answer your Political Science questions and direct you to our Government Information Connection specialists and resources (at the Eagle Commons Library) as needed.

     

    Stay safe. Stay well.

     

    Posted by & filed under Boredom Busters, Is That a Document?, Toys R U.S..

    Marlon Preuss illustration for Fish and Wildlife Service "Find Your Way" coloring book

    For over a hundred years, coloring books have been a popular form of entertainment for children of all ages. Today we’d like to introduce you to the hundreds of coloring books and coloring pages produced by our federal and state governments and made available to the public for free, both in your local depository library and online.

    A Little History

    Coloring books have been around since around 1879, when illustrator Kate Greenaway teamed up with the McLoughlin Brothers—publishers of children’s books, board games, paper dolls, and other amusements—to produce The Little Folks’ Painting Book.

    Little Folks' Painting Book cover

    Later children’s coloring books were enhanced with a variety of other activities, including crossword puzzles, connect-the-dots games, word searches, and other brainteasers. Today these two genres have become so inseparable that it’s sometimes hard to find coloring books that are not also activity books, or vice versa.

    Some parents, psychologists, and educators have warned that coloring books stifle creativity and encourage mindless conformity. Others have praised their purported benefits, such as improving hand-eye coordination; teaching artistic concepts such as shape, color, and design; and providing a relaxing, therapeutic activity. In spite of the controversy, coloring books have proved immensely popular, and are most likely here to stay.

    Government Coloring Books

    Departments and agencies in every branch of the government have used coloring books for decades to capture children’s attention while teaching them all sorts of facts and concepts ranging from science, to nutrition, to history and how the justice system works. And, of course, dinosaurs!

    Dan and Sue Meet the Meat Family coloring book



    Get Excited about the Brain: A Colring and Activity Book

    Paper copies of many of these coloring books are in the government documents collection at the Eagle Commons Library. They are not currently available to the public because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but plenty of online coloring books are also linked in our online catalog. To search for our coloring books, go to the library catalog on the UNT Libraries homepage, select “Books & More” to search the catalog, then select “Genre” as your type of search, “Government Documents” as the collection, and “coloring books” as the name of the genre:

    Genre search in UNT Libraries catalog

    You can do the same search and substitute “activity books” for “coloring books” to find our many fun and educational activity books published by government agencies.

    Dusty the Asthma Goldfish and his Asthma Triggers Funbook

    Don’t forget that there are hundreds of government coloring books online that may not be listed in our catalog. To find these, go to the website of an agency such as NASA, the EPA, or the National Institutes of Health and search the phrase “coloring book” or the phrase “activity book.” You can search the same phrases at the USA.gov website to find coloring books publshed by all agencies of the federal government as well as those published by state and local governments.

    Perseverance coloring page

    Kin meets some friends in the playroom (NIH coloring book).

    Not Just for Children

    They have traditionally been seen as a children’s toy, but in recent years adults have been getting in on the action, and there are even coloring books marketed specifically to adults, who often find them both beautiful and relaxing.

    A couple of years ago, Smithsonian magazine published a profile of Johanna Basford, the pioneer of adult coloring books. Even her publisher was surprised when Basford’s debut coloring book, Secret Garden, became a bestseller. She has produced several popular works since then.

    The Smithsonian Institution also has in its Archives of American Art The Marcel Breuer Coloring Book—a whimsical, homemade coloring book discovered in the files of the Bauhaus-trained modernist architect and designer Marcel Breuer. No one knows who made this coloring book, or why, but it may have been distributed among the employees of his architectural office in New York. (The original drawings from which the book was made are also held by the Smithsonian.)



    Government agency comic books are typically intended for children, but that doesn’t mean adults can’t enjoy them also, and maybe learn something new while coloring!

    The Accidental Coloring Books

    Many images available from government agencies are not actually intended as coloring pages, but are line drawings that look beautiful when colored in. Think of them as “accidental,” or “hidden” coloring books.

    For example, the weird and wonderful illustrations in patent applications can be great fun to color. The National Archives and Records Administration has even published a Coloring Book of Patents that you can download for free.

    Coloring Book of Patents

    Historical engravings and etchings such as this illustration of Victoria Woodhull testifying before a congressional committee also make lovely coloring pages:

    Victoria Woodhull testifying before a congressional committee

    Architectural drawings such as this picture of the U.S. Capitol also make excellent coloring pages:

    U.S. Capitol

    The PDF edition of the Texas Register is always interspersed with illustrations by Texas schoolchildren. Many of these are suitable for coloring.

    Drawing of Texas symbols published in Texas Register.

    Since 2016, through the annual #ColorOurCollections festival sponsored by the New York Academy of Medicine Library, libraries, archives, museums, art galleries, and other cultural institutions around the world have shared a plethora of free coloring pages based on images from their collections.

    Lin-Manuel Miranda coloring page

    Show Us Your Colors

    We hope this article has inspired you to create some of your own art out of some of the many government agency coloring books and coloring pages they have made available. Please share any coloring projects you have done, and we will put them on display!

    Article by Bobby Griffith.
    Click on each image to see the hosting agency’s website.

    Posted by & filed under Is That a Document?, Recipes, Special Days, Uncategorized.

    An African American father, mother, and young daughter barbecuing in the backyard.

    June is national Soul Food month, so before we all fry our way into July, we thought we’d highlight a government document soul food source.

    The term soul food was apparently coined in the 1960s to describe an African American cuisine born in the rural areas of southern states. The distinction between soul food and the broader umbrella of southern cooking seems to stem from soul food having more heat, more seasoning, and somewhat more thorough use of meat products. Black home chefs took humble ingredients and turned them into delicious and satisfying menus.

    Today we occasionally take old favorite recipes and convert them to adjust for busy schedules and modern diet needs. Our US Departments have also tried to help inform us and improve our health, and soul food hasn’t been overlooked. The National Cancer Institute created a series of documents called Down Home Healthy Cooking to help address the issue of higher mortality and disease rates in U.S. black populations.

    Down Home Healthy Cooking: Recipes and Tips for Healthy Cooking

    The New Orleans Red Beans recipe we profile comes from the 2006 edition of that document.

    New Orleans Red Beans recipe

    Diet consciousness isn’t purely a modern effort. President Johnson’s chef, Zephyr Wright, wrote the president letters for each meal that he termed her “love letters.” She would break down the nutritional information in his meal so he was aware of what he was consuming.


    White House Chef Zephyr Wright and nutrition information for the Red Beans recipe.


    The National Cancer Institute has written us a “love letter” also, so we are aware of the nutritional content if the recipe is prepared as written. The Institute’s red bean recipe is vegan, so it appropriate for a variety of diets, and although listed as a side dish, it is hearty enough to be a main meal. If you compare this health conscious recipe to a more traditional red beans recipe, the main alterations seem to be the absence of pork products or pork bones, and they suggest serving with brown rice instead of white rice. We suspect the sodium levels in the modified recipe are also much lower than in a more traditional recipe.

    This dish is made up of affordable and healthy ingredients. It makes a generous amount, so we had some to consume, some to share, and some to put away for a quick meal on a future day. We pretty much followed the recipe as written, except that since we had a smoked sea salt, we would use it to make up for some of the smoke flavor that would otherwise be represented by pork products. We also added a jalapeño in place of some of the sweet pepper and added a dash or two of cayenne pepper to spice things up a little bit.

    Red beans cooking in the pan.

    The beans smell great simmering on the stove. The recipe states that the beans should be done after adding the last set of ingredients and cooking on low for 30 minutes, but we found it took significantly longer to help the beans go from watery to a creamier stage.

    A plate of New Orleans Red Beans

    Served over a simple brown rice, the dish tastes healthy but also soul satisfying.

    More Resources to Explore

    There are several government sources for healthy cooking recipes. SNAP Recipes are healthy, with a short list of affordable ingredients.

    The ethnology of food is vast and thought-provoking. The UNT Libraries has several online sources for further reading about the history of African American cooking, and the history and influence of soul foods.

    Here are a few of these sources:



    Article by Erica Kaufman

    Photo of Zephyr Wright by Donald Stoder, courtesy of LBJ Presidential Library/National Archives.

    Image of family barbecue from the National Cancer Institute publication Down Home Healthy Cooking.

    Posted by & filed under Boredom Busters, Special Days.

    A toad admires the greenery near the front steps of Sycamore Hall

     

    As the weather warms up and the days become longer, many of us look forward to spending time outdoors in our gardens. Gardening provides opportunities to enjoy nature, sunshine, and exercise as we dig in the dirt. And there’s something so satisfying about caring for plants and watching them grow to reward us with beautiful flowers or fresh produce.

     

      A helpful pamphlet for city dwellers, 1938

                             

    Farmers have always grown vegetable gardens; but in the early 20th century, with the advents of two World Wars and the Great Depression, urban and suburban gardens surged in popularity. In 1942, the United States government launched a Victory Garden Program that sparked Americans to plant millions of gardens to support the war effort. By 1944, Victory Gardens were producing 40 percent of the vegetables in the United States.

    Grow Your Own Victory Garden  

     

    Victory Gardens weren’t solely about food security, however. Among the stated goals of the Program were the provision of healthful exercise and stress relief through gardening. Throughout the war and Depression years, American gardeners also enjoyed the benefits of community building, as many of the gardens were planted on public lands and overseen by local organizations.

       

    The collective joy of gardening continues today at UNT’s own campus Community Garden. Membership is free to the UNT community, and tools are provided. (Alas, all the plots are currently spoken for. Check back with them in the fall!)

     

     

    In the meantime, consider starting your own garden on a kitchen windowsill, a front porch, or whatever space you have available at home.

    June is National Gardening Month, so don’t forget to celebrate your garden too, no matter how big or small! Social distancing may rule out in-person garden celebrations, but you can still take pictures and share them with your friends.

    In celebration of National Gardening Month, here are some pictures of our library staff members’ own gardens:

       

    Happy gardening to all!

       
    More Fun Links to Explore

    How to Grow Vegetables (Texas Agrilife Extension) 

    Small Agriculture – A historical exhibit about school gardens, homesteads, and Victory Gardens. (National Agricultural Library)
     

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