a visit to the national women’s history museum

The Reviews

I appreciate reviews of places and museums.  Not to brag, but I carry the prestigious title of ‘Local Guide’ through Google.  I’m a fan of them.  Like most in the 21st century, reviews sway my initial impression of a place before I’ve even experienced it in person.  If the reviews are well-written, there are enough of them, and a decent amount of pictures are provided, I may not experience a place for myself.  A well-written review will let me know if it is worth my time.  Good reviews obtain faith from the reader – it’s a new religion.

When I visited this museum two days ago, there were three Google reviews.  A one-star rating said it was terrible and discouraged anyone from visiting.  Another one-star rating said the museum did nothing but say Trump was a rapist.  And a third, which I think was a three-star rating.

As I typed this up today, I went back to get the reviews so I can post them on here, and they’re all gone.  If anyone manages to find these, please let me know, I’d like to have them attached to this post.

Needless to say, the average rating for this museum, with no pictures, was dismal.

Nevertheless, I persisted.

The Museum

The drive to Washington, DC is about 3.5 hours from my place in Pennsylvania.  I headed straight for the museum, and ended up at what is questionably a former apartment building turned into small offices.

I don’t know the hours, they aren’t posted on their website or the door.  And when I asked, no one answered that question.

The museum was once mobile on a bus, owned by the Schramm family.  There was a small collection of items from women such as Susan B. Anthony, Rosa Parks, Sojourner Truth, and the rest were a handful of white women who’ve done their best to progress the life of a woman forward.

The museum is also in one room that is smaller than my bedroom.  A short little blurb about a handful of these women is taped to some construction paper that’s tacked up on a wall.

It took about 6 minutes to read through everything there, and it only took that long because I asked a few questions and signed the guest book.  I signed it for November 2018, the last signature was December 2017.

A note:  There is no mention of Trump, rapist or otherwise.

The Frustration

Up to this point, I’ve done my best to provide information as objectively as possible.  But this is where my opinion will kick in.

We can – without a doubt – do better than this.  The office filled with women hope they can get an official museum space to maybe have the opportunity as an exhibit somewhere.

There is more information about women throughout history on their website.  They also have t-shirts and things they sell to raise money for a proper space.

It’s disappointing to see that how I know our country feels about women, our history, our rights, our personal space, our individual identities (the list can really go on here), is 110% reflected in the status of the National Women’s History Museum.

It’s fucking atrocious.

I’d like to help this in anyway possible.

It starts with spreading the word.  SO!  If you’re in DC, go.  Visit.  Sign the guestbook.  Buy a t-shirt online.  Sign up the newsletter, become a member.  Help in ways that are super easy and don’t break the bank.

When you go – write them some proper Google reviews, or trip advisor, or whathaveyou, to help show foot traffic.  And be honest, right?  I will be in my review.  It’s shit, and that’s heartbreaking to say.

Movements are more powerful in numbers.  Maybe it might take a year or two for anything to come of sparing thirty seconds to write a review, but it certainly is not harmful.

I would also like to make a request to the curators of the museum.  That what develops and grows from the few posters taped to a wall in someone’s office needs to be more inclusive.

The Next Step

Have patience when you go.  It’s in Alexandria, VA.  It’s maybe a 15 minute drive from center city in Washington, DC.

But go.  Help.  This should be a proper museum and not something that resembles a fourth-grade history presentation.

Interested to see more of my thoughts on feminist themes? Check out my post ‘be a better feminist‘.

Photo taken in Quebec, Quebec June 2018.

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