“That we have the vote means nothing. That we use it in the right way means everything. Our political work has only begun when we have the ballot. And that work should be carried out exactly as our college work is — as any good work which we undertake is — it must be thoughtful, idealistic, clean, effective.”
-Lou Henry Hoover, April 10, 1920
Before she was First Lady, Lou Henry Hoover spoke at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania. At the time of her speech, the 19th Amendment had been passed by Congress. On August 18, 1920, the amendment was ratified, guaranteeing American women the right to vote.
-from the Hoover Library
Lady Bird’s Beautification of Washington D.C.
Beautification Luncheon in the State Dining Room of the White House. Secretary Stewart Udall, Lady Bird Johnson, and Laurance Rockefeller looking at an architectural model of the Washington DC Mall area. 4/27/67.
Mar 27, 1912: The First Japanese Cherry Blossom Trees Are Planted in the U.S.
On this day in 1912, the first two Japanese cherry blossom trees were successfully planted by First Lady Helen Taft and Viscountess Chinda on the Tidal Basin in Washington, D.C. Japanese Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo gave the U.S. over 3000 trees to demonstrate the growing relationship between the U.S. and Japan.
Every spring, Washington D.C. commemorates the initial planting through the National Cherry Blossom Festival.
As we wait for this year’s blooming period, treat yourself to this delicious spring recipe!
Image: Cherry blossoms in Washington D.C. 2013 (Diana Alvarenga)
Soon after the Kennedys moved into the White House, Jacqueline Kennedy embarked on a major restoration of the presidential mansion. Her efforts inside the White House are well documented, but did you know that she was also responsible for redesigning and replanting the White House gardens? After President Kennedy’s death, Lady Bird Johnson renamed the East Garden as the “Jacqueline Kennedy Garden” in honor of her work. Pictures of the Jacqueline Kennedy Garden are below, including the dedication plaque which reads, “This garden is dedicated to Jacqueline Kennedy with great affection by those who worked with her in the White House. April 22, 1965.”
In honor of your inner gardener on the first day of spring, here’s a photo of First Lady Lady Bird Johnson’s ceremonial garden shovel and trowel.
The trowel was used by Lady Bird during the beautification plantings in Washington, D.C.: the Natural History Building, March 9, 1965; Charles Young School, November 8, 1966; and the Lady Bird Johnson Park, October 20, 1967. It was made by Red Hawk.
The shovel was presented to Lady Bird by The Commissioners, D.C. on Arbor Day, April 30, 1965. It was made by Union Fork & Hoe Co.
-from the LBJ Library
Betty Ford will be honored in the 2013 National Women’s Hall of Fame
From the announcement:
“A groundbreaking First Lady, Betty Ford is often remembered for her candor in addressing the controversial issues of her time. Shortly after she became the First Lady of the United States in 1974, Ford was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a radical mastectomy. Rather than suppressing the diagnosis, Ford courageously shared her story and inspired countless women across the nation to get breast cancer examinations. In 1978, following a family intervention, Ford underwent successful treatment for addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs. She again used her story to raise public awareness of addiction, and in 1982, she co-founded the Betty Ford Center to treat victims of alcohol and chemical dependency. Ford was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1991 and the Congressional Gold Medal, with President Gerald R. Ford, in 1999.”
Go Betty! (1918 – 2011)
Photo: Photograph of First Lady Betty Ford Expressing Her Support for the Equal Rights Amendment in Hollywood, Florida, 02/25/1975
Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized anyway.
-Eleanor Roosevelt, NYC native First Lady, who now has a monument dedicated to her in Riverside Park.
Share your quotes during Women’s History Month using the hashtag #NYCWomen.
George H.W. and Barbara Bush celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary yesterday. Sixty. Eighth.
1945 photo via The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum; 2008 photo by Ricky Carioti (The Washington Post)