Women during the Progressive Era

Tara Maloney and Caroline Doran
Resource Guide: The Contributions of American Women during the Progressive Era
Focus areas: Suffrage, Temperance, Muckrakers
Primary Sources:
The New York Times – “Roosevelt talks Politics to Women”
Library of Congress: By Popular Demand: “Votes for Women” Suffrage pictures (1850-1920) Collection
of primary source documents related to the suffrage movement (1850-1920)
The Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony Papers Project Online http://ecssba.rutgers.edu
Primary source excerpts:
Excerpts from Ida Tarbell’s writings on Standard Oil Company – These were originally published in
McClure magazine - http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/rockefellers/sfeature/sf_7.html
“Class of the Titans: Rockefeller vs. Tarbell” Primary source excerpts that reveal what each person
thought of the other -http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/rockefellers/sfeature/sf_6.html
Electronic Books:
Bly, Nellie [Elizabeth Jane Cochrane Seaman], Ten Days in a Mad-house. New York: Ian L. Munro, no
date. Note: an electronic version of this book is published online, and may be accessed at
The Narrative of Sojourner Truth, written by Olive Gilbert, based on information provided by Truth.
1850. This electronic version is available through the University of Virginia at the following address:
The American Experience: The Rockefellers: Biography of Ida Tarbell
The American Experience: Suffrage History – Collection of annotated resources
Library of Congress: Suffrage Timeline http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/vfwhtml/vfwtl.html
Nellie Bly – “Inside Blackwell’s Insane Asylum” http://www.correctionhistory.org/rooseveltisland/bly/html/blackwell.html
PBS - Overview of the Progressive Era
PBS – Mini-biography of Carrie Nation
Wisconsin Electronic Reader – Mini biography of Frances Willard
University of California – Interview with Alice Paulhttp://content.cdlib.org/view?docId=kt6f59n89c;NAAN=13030&doc.view=frames&chunk.id=d0e3250&t
Historical sites
The Susan B. Anthony House – Rochester, New York www.susanbanthonyhouse.org
Women’s Rights National Historical Park – Seneca Falls, NY www.nps.gov/wori/
Documentary – “America in the Twentieth Century: The Progressive Era”. Media Rich Learning, 2002.
Video Segment. 17 August 2010. <http://www.discoveryeducation.com>
Documentary – “Just the Facts: The Emergence of Modern America: The Progressive Era.” Goldhil,
2003. Full Video. 19 August 2010. <http://www.discoveryeducation.com>
Full-length feature – “Iron Jawed Angels”
Music video – “Schoolhouse Rock: Sufferin’ till Suffrage”
Audio Clips
“Songs of the Suffragettes” by Elizabeth Knight- “Oh Dear, What Can the Matter Be?”
http://www.emusic.com/album/Elizabeth-Knight-Songs-of-the-Suffragettes-MP3Download/10894946.html (also available on iTunes)
Additional Resource – Activities and Resources from PBS
PBS Teachers – Thematic Teaching – Women’s Rights Then and Now
** This resource list also includes useful books for middle school learners.
Applications and Activities
Photograph Analysis
Model how to analyze a photograph using the “Tiles” application on Smart Notebook
Students may analyze photographs of suffragists using document analysis sheets from the
National Archives
Mini-interview Activity
As an in-class activity, students will be assigned one of seven female reformers during the Progressive
Era. Based on prior knowledge, students will create four questions and answers for the particular
reformer. These questions will address different levels of thinking, and will include examination,
analytical, evaluation and hypothetical questions. One student will assume the role of the interviewer, and
the other, the historical figure.
Culminating Activity
Students will create a magazine cover of one notable female reformer. Students may utilize technology or
their own artistic ability to create this magazine cover. The magazine cover component on
bighugelabs.com is especially helpful.
Students may select:
Susan B. Anthony
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Alice Paul
Ida Tarbell
Nellie Bly
Carrie Nation
Frances Willard
Required Elements (exemplars would be provided in class)
Visual of the historical figure
Title of the magazine (Life, Time, or any appropriate original title)
Publication date
Create three original headlines related to this person and her struggles/achievements
One of the three headlines must be related to their interview.
Address label
** On the back of the magazine cover, students will write a 3-5 sentence explanation of each headline.
Students will include a copy of their interview questions and answers with their magazine cover
Bingo Review Game – American Women Then and Now
A list of twenty four notable American women will be provided in class. Students will write down the
names of each person on one side of a double-sided Bingo board (other side is for the clues). Some names
students will recognize right away, and others may need research. On the other side of the Bingo sheet,
students will write bullet points highlighting the contributions or achievements of these figures. This will
be done for homework. During the follow up lesson, the class will play Bingo as a form of review. There
may be times when the teacher may read clues, or the students will utilize their bullet points and give the
clue. This serves as an enjoyable review and state test prep activity.
List of names:
Frances Willard
Carrie Nation
Alice Paul
Susan B. Anthony
Elizabeth Cady Stanton
Sojourner Truth
Frances Perkins
Eleanor Roosevelt
Grimke Sisters
Amelia Earhart
Oprah Winfrey
Nellie Bly
Ida Tarbell
Clara Barton
Dorothea Dix
Sally Ride
Jane Addams
Mother Jones
Jeanette Rankin
Mary McLeod Bethune
Margaret Sanger
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Harriet Tubman
Hillary Rodham Clinton