To my great joy, the city of Beacon, New York, just received a historic marker grant to honor Margaret Fuller from the Pomeroy Foundation. Fuller stayed for seven weeks in Fishkill Landing, now a part of Beacon, along the Hudson River to write her book, “Woman in the Nineteenth Century,” which chronicled womens’ right to be equal with men. This first American feminist tract became a national and international bestseller in 1845 while Margaret was working as the first woman social and literary critic for the New York Tribune published by Horace Greeley. While residing at the Van Vliet boardinghouse in Fishkill Landing during fall 1844, Fuller enjoyed being in the beautiful nature as well as good health. She visited the women prisoners at Sing Sing prison several times to hold “Conversations” with them, asking their input for her book.
As agency representative and marker contact for the city of Beacon’s marker grant application, I was able to provide the primary source research with the help of Robert Murphy, President of the Beacon Historical Society. I am grateful to Elizabeth Evans, assistant to the Mayor, who enthusiastically took the idea to the Mayor and City Council who voted unanimously to apply. The Margaret Fuller marker will be placed next to the Beacon Chamber of Commerce’s Visitor’s Center, which was the location of the Van Vliet boardinghouse.
The dedication of the Margaret Fuller marker is being planned for sometime in the spring of 2016. I will keep you posted!
This marker will be part of the Women’s Rights and Suffrage History Trail in New York State as we move toward the 100th Anniversary of Women’s Right to Vote 2017 and nationally in 2020.