Group of contact sheets and 35 mm film negatives totaling 264 unique black-and-white images, together with 25 modern 8x10" photographic prints from the negatives, from the August 26, 1971 Women's March for Equality held in New York City, including images of feminist leaders and founders of the National Women's Political Caucus Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, and Bella Abzug; numerous shots of the crowd holding protest banners and signs with slogans such as "A Woman's Right to Choose Abortion" and "Repeal all abortion laws" from the Long Island Ad Hoc Committee to Defend Women's Right to Abortion; demonstrators in front of St. Patrick's Cathedral; reproductive rights activist Bill Baird; and a group of counter protestors with signs reading "Abortion is murder." Various sheet sizes. Loose as issued. New York, 1971.
Since 1971, August 26 has been celebrated as Women's Equality Day, and is the anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment which gave women the right to vote. The march shown in these photos occurred one year after the Women's Strike for Equality, at that time the largest protest for gender quality in United States history, with over 100,000 participants nationwide. According to an article from the New York Times, police estimated attendance for this march at 6,000 people. The march started at 5:30 pm at 5th Avenue and 44th Street and ended at the 72nd Street Mall in a rally. A series of demonstrations were also held throughout the city to draw attention to the demands for equality, legal access to abortion and contraception, childcare, equal education and employment, and political power. One of the contact sheets is marked with an orange grease pencil, commonly used in photo editing, and some of the strips are marked with numbers, but there is no further indication as to who the photographer was who took these images. An important collection of photographs from a key moment in the women's rights movement.
Book ID: 50217