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For history buffs in the Fairfax Area, Fairfax County History Commission presents the Sixteenth Annual History Conference. This year, the conference will be held virtually and will discuss the one-hundredth anniversary of female suffrage in the US. The topic will be “Votes for Women: The Rest of Our Story - ​The Passage of 19th Amendment”. Many of the topics throughout the day will center on the barriers that still faced African American women at the time that the 19th Amendment was passed.  

The morning session, which will take place from ten a.m. until twelve-thirty will cover ​“The Untold Story - America’s Best Kept Secret”​ , and will be led by Chairman of Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Jeff McKay, Congressman Gerry Connell of the 11th district, Pat Gilbert, the Executive Director of NOVA Parks, Pat Wirth, Executive Director of the Turning Point Memorial, NOVA Community College Professor of Women’s Studies, and Mary Lipsey of the Fairfax History Commission. The topics covered will be “The Turning Point Memorial”, “Suffragists in Washington, DC”, and “the Untold Stories of Those Who STILL Could NOT Vote.” The morning session will also have the Announcements of FCHC Award Winners. 

The afternoon session, taking place from two p.m. to four fifteen will cover the African American Suffragist. It will be led by Cypriana McCray, the President of the Reston-Dulles Council of Negro Women, Dr. Thelma Daley, former president of the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., Ester McCullough, Mary Lipsey, and Lynne Garvey-Hodge. 

Women’s suffrage has a special relationship to Fairfax County, as prominent suffragette Dr. Kate Waller Barrett hails from the area. Barrett was instrumental in establishing “rescue homes” for unwed mothers, as well as other important feminist work.  

The Fairfax County History Commission was founded in 1969 with the mission of advising the County government in promoting and “encouraging all matters bearing on the history of Fairfax County, and to help identify, document, record, and preserve our County’s historic past.” 

The conference can be accessed at​ ​www.fairfaxcounty.gov/cable​ .

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