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History

Early Organization
UNYWHO was originally formed in the 1970s to provide support, an intellectual base, and a spirit of camaraderie for women's historians throughout New York State, and its early members included Judith Wellman, Christopher Densmore, Carol Kammen, Elizabeth Fox-Genovese, Pat Haines, and Mary Huth, among others.  Wellman remembers, "it was life-saving, in those years of the 1970s when we on individual campuses were sometimes close to desperate for a sense of validation, purpose, and hope for the future of ourselves personally, for women in general, and for women's history."  From the 1970s throughout the early 1990s, UNYWHO held regular conferences to facilitate personal and intellectual exchange.

2003 Resurgence
After losing momentum in the 1990s, UNYWHO was revived in November 2003 at the Researching New York Conference at SUNY-Albany, when separately organized panels on women's history joined together one evening for dinner.  The fellowship enjoyed that evening prompted the participants to propose reinvigorating UNYWHO.  Wellman, one of the original founders, is the moving spirit behind this resurgence.  With her usual enthusiasm and fierce dedication, Wellman made sure that the ideas sparked that evening in Albany were not lost.  She soon organized area women's historians into a newly reconstituted network.  The new incarnation of UNYWHO includes a host of original members as well as graduate students, new faculty, independent scholars, documentary editors, and public historians.

Looking Forward
UNYWHO has planned a number of initiatives on the local and national level. Modeled on the original association, members plan to meet informally to build the area community of women's history.  UNYWHO has organized regular conferences in 2009, 2012, and upcoming in 2015 and expects to support local women's history projects.  These projects include an effort to place the Farmington Meeting House, where Frederick Douglass, Lucretia Mott, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Susan B. Anthony spoke, on the National Register of Historic Places.  We also hope to lobby in support of legislation promoting women's history, including the Votes for Women History Trail Act of 2003, introduced in Congress by Representative Louise Slaughter.  
We invite women's historians in upstate New York, as well as those interested in the history of this region to join our listserv, which serves as our membership list.  For more information, please contact Carol Faulkner at cfaulkne@maxwell.syr.edu.
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