Margaret Sanger

The pioneering and fearless birth control advocate Margaret Sanger was born in 1879 on this day, Sept. 14th. This statue of a Sanger with a gag over her mouth stands in Old South Meeting House, Boston, MA, as part of a permanent multimedia exhibition, “Voices of Protest.” The backstory is:

Year after year Mayor James Michael Curley prohibited Sanger from speaking at public events in Boston. In 1929, advocates of free speech and progressive causes, organized a banquet and “frolic” at the Ford Hall Forum, a venue that supported free speech and tolerance. In keeping with the “frolic” theme Sanger appeared with a two-inch wide white gag across her mouth, (a writer of banned books, Percy Marks, wore handcuffs to prevent him from writing). “That by laughing in this way at those who are responsible for the censorship we can do more good than in any other way,” explained the associate director of the Forum. This photograph by Susan Wilson appeared with the article: Margaret Sanger Gagged!. (2004, Spring) Margaret Sanger Papers Project Newsletter. 36, 1-4.  For more fascinating stories about historic women go to: www.pennycolman.com
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