A group of African American women (members of the "Smart Set Club") pose on a staircase
About the image

Scurlock Studio Records, ca. 1905-1994, Archives Center, National Museum of American History

Because of Her Story

Portrait of Mary Cassatt with a large black feathered headpiece
I made an impression.
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Mary Cassatt

Artist

IT MAY INTEREST you what Degas said when he saw the picture you just bought for your Museum. It was painted in 1891 ... He was chary of praise, but he spoke of the drawing of the woman’s arm plucking the fruit and said no woman has the right to draw like that.

He said the color was like a Whistler. He had spoken of the picture to Berthe Morisot who did not like it. I can understand that. If it stands the test of time & is well drawn its place in a Museum might show the present generation we worked & learnt our profession.

Mary Cassatt’s paintings and letters are at the Smithsonian. They will be used to tell her story and other women’s stories of not compromising creativity.

Credits

Photo: Unidentified photographer, Mary Cassatt, 1914. Frederick A. Sweet research material on Mary Cassatt and James A. McNeill Whistler, 1872–1975. Archives of American Art

Content: Mary Cassatt letter to Homer Saint-Gaudens, December 28, 1922, Archives of American Art

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The American Women's History Initiative will amplify women's voices to honor the past, inform the present and inspire the future.

Bella Abzug (in hat), Betty Freidan (right, in trench coat) and Billie Jean King (far right) accompany torch relay runners into Houston, 1977. Unknown photographer; National Archives
About the image

Bella Abzug (in hat), Betty Freidan (right, in trench coat) and Billie Jean King (far right) accompany torch relay runners into Houston, 1977. Unknown photographer; National Archives.