The Dames

Dames portrait of woman sitting outside by house

On view in the Local History Gallery through July 2020

For many people, ancestral lineage organizations such as the Colonial Dames are a world apart. We might be intrigued by their celebration of family and colonial history, patriotic service, and shared values—or, alternately, made uncomfortable by perceptions of elitism surrounding their lineage-based membership. But who are these women—these Dames? This exhibit is a collection of oral history recordings and photographic portraits created by the Vermont Folklife Center featuring thirteen members of the National Society of Colonial Dames of America in the State of Vermont. The stories of these women bring to light life challenges met with grace and courage, opportunities embraced with pioneering spirit and preparedness, lives lived with a strong sense of purpose–and a coming to terms with aging.

The exhibit is presented in the Local History Gallery in conjunction with the exhibit The Sheldon Relic Chair 1884/2018.

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