Doors open at 6:00 pm
Program starts at 6:30 pm
About the Program:
“Florida’s Female Pioneers” examines some of the women who have shaped the Sunshine State. Dr. Esther Hill Hawks, a female doctor during the Civil War, visited Florida during the war and ran the first racially integrated free school in Florida during Reconstruction. She wrote lyrical descriptions of the St. Johns River and documented the aftermath of the Civil War in Florida. Harriet Beecher Stowe is credited with kick-starting Florida’s tourism industry with her 1873 book, “Palmetto Leaves.” Florida First Lady May Mann Jennings, married to Florida Governor William Sherman Jennings, was a suffragist and conservationist who was known as the “Mother of Florida Forestry” and helped establish Royal Palm State Park, which later became the nucleus of Everglades National Park. This talk focuses on these Florida pioneers and other, lesser known female firsts.
About the Speaker:
Peggy Macdonald is a native Floridian and the executive director of the Matheson History Museum in Gainesville. Dr. Macdonald has taught history at Stetson University, Florida Polytechnic University, Indian River State College and the University of Florida. Her recent book, Marjorie Harris Carr: Defender of Florida’s Environment, won Honorable Mention in Foreword Reviews’ 2014 INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award contest in Women’s Studies. She writes articles on local history for Gainesville Magazine, Our Town Magazine and Senior Times Magazine. Macdonald is an alumna of the University of Florida (PhD in history, 2010) and Hollins University, a women’s college in Roanoke, Virginia.