Sometime in the late 1980s, a young girl was on a class trip walking Boston’s famed Freedom Trail. The girl, perhaps influenced by her mother’s feminist persuasion and observant of the personalities described on the Trail, asked, “Where are the women?”
Indeed, where were the women? They were right there in front of our faces. Inspired by the child’s question, a group of Boston Public School teachers, librarians, and other educators constructed a list of hundreds of women with Boston roots or connections who had made contributions to society by virtue of their careers or volunteer work but had never been recognized. Thus was the genesis of the Boston Women’s Heritage Trail.
Women’s lives and achievements have enriched the history of Boston for almost four centuries, yet the significance of their stories is often overlooked. Patriots, intellectuals, abolitionists, suffragists, artists, and writers – Boston women have always played an integral role in shaping history.
The Boston Women’s Heritage Trail tells some of these diverse and remarkable stories, and forever weaves Boston women back into the fabric of the “city upon a hill.”