The EWHP is pleased to announce that the National Votes for Women Trail Marker for Catharine Waugh McCulloch will be dedicated on Saturday, October 30th at 11 am in the newly renovated McCulloch Park!
Save the date and join us in honoring her!
In August of 2020 the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment (Women’s Suffrage) was commemorated with public programs and projects that explored the multi-layered meaning of this watershed moment for American women’s history.
Evanston was home to many suffragists and supporting organizations, and its critical role in the state and national suffrage movement was documented and highlighted in many ways, including online exhibits and public programs. One of the projects that connected Evanston with the national story and commemoration was the National Votes for Women Trail. A project of the National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites (NCWHS), and funded by the Pomeroy Foundation, the Votes for Women Trail includes historic markers placed at sites significant to the national suffrage movement in each state. Three markers have been placed in Illinois – in Chicago (Alpha Suffrage Club), in Oak Park (Grace Wilbur Trout), and in Lombard (Ellen Martin). The fourth site is in Evanston and is chosen to honor the work of attorney Catharine Waugh McCulloch.
Catharine Waugh McCulloch was a lawyer, suffragist, political activist, and life-long supporter of women’s rights. She was one of the first women in the U.S. elected as Justice of the Peace, where she served in Evanston from 1907-1913. McCulloch served as Chair of the Legislative Committee of the Illinois Equal Suffrage Association for 22 years, and later as its President. She also served as legal advisor (1904-1911) and vice-president (1910-1911) of the National American Woman Suffrage Association. She was President of the Women’s Democratic Club of Illinois and Legal Counsel to the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union.
Catharine McCulloch lived in Evanston for fifty years, from 1895 until her death in 1945. Catharine McCulloch park was named in her honor by the City of Evanston in 1975. The Votes for Women Trail marker for McCulloch will be placed in McCulloch Park as part of an overall renovation of the park and added interpretation of McCulloch’s story.
The Evanston Women’s History Project at the Evanston History Center led the local project. Lori Osborne, Director of the Evanston Women’s History Project and the Willard House, was the Illinois coordinator for this initiative. The League of Women Voters of Illinois and Evanston were key participants, along with many Evanston-based nonprofits and women’s organizations.
Further information can be found here:
Evanston and Suffrage – https://evanstonwomen.org/evanston-women-and-the-19th/
Illinois and Suffrage – https://suffrage2020illinois.org/