Early Feminists Opposing “Restellism”
“Restellism,” a period term for abortion, was named after Ann Lohman, who became notorious for advertising and selling abortifacient medicines and performing surgical abortions under the name “Madame Restell.” Early feminists
The Restellism Traveling Wall displays quotes from several early feminists, including Eleanor Kirk, “What will become of the babies?” and Mattie Brinkerhoff, “How shall we prevent the destruction of life and health?” Dr. Charlotte Denman Lozier refuses to perform an abortion on an eighteen-year-old, saying to the man seeking to procure it, “He had come to the wrong place for any such shameful, revolting, unnatural and unlawful purpose.”
The Restellism Traveling Wall also contains text from several copies of the newspaper, The Revolution. Among her many forms of activism, Susan B. Anthony was ‘proprietor’ of this early feminist newspaper. From its beginning, the newspaper’s policy was that “no quack or immoral advertisements will be admitted.” The reason given was that “Restellism had long found in these broths of Beelzebub, its securest hiding place.”
Above: The Restellism Traveling Wall on display at the Yale Club, New York City, for the Susan B. Anthony List event,
“A Conversation on Pro-Life Feminism.”
Below: The Restellism Wall as seen in the Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum, Adams, MA.
Rent the Traveling Wall Today!
The attractive, attention-getting Traveling Wall is suitable for:
- Historical Societies
- Town Halls/Town Buildings.
The Traveling Wall is affordable and easy to use.
The Traveling Wall, measuring approximately 90” x 90”, can be rented for short or long-term exhibits. For information on rates and availability,
The Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum at: 413.743.7121