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The Movement Comes of Age


Holland's Magazine, January 1913

Holland's Magazine was a monthly women's magazine published by the Texas Farm and Ranch Publishing Company from 1905 to 1953. Like other magazines such as the Ladies Home Journal and the Woman's Home Companion, Holland's constantly adjusted its editorial content based on what its readers wanted to see. Thus, Holland's vigorously supported the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs in their work for community development and beautification. Yet the magazine also made strenuous fun of women suffragists and published numerous stories in which young women who eschewed marriage and children received a bitter comeuppance.

In the January 1913 issue, a humorous story called "Living Up to Elizabeth" shows how a group of suffragists wrecked a woman's plan to host a club meeting devoted to the poetry of Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning:

"When she could bear to put the question, Miss Harden asked: 'Am I to understand that you no longer read the Brownings?'

'We do not,' they cried. 'We stopped that foolishness long ago.'

'How could you when you are a Browning club?' persisted the bewildered little woman.

'But we're not,' the president said. 'We are now the Women's Civic League. We work for many movements in which I am sure you will be interested. There's the ten-hour law, the child labor bill, pure milk, swatting the fly, home gardens -- '

'Stop,' begged Miss Harden. 'Are you,' her voice trembled, 'are you suffragettes?'

'I am a woman suffragist,' said the president, with emphasis on the 'ist' that would have told one less distressed than Miss Harden that she had blundered. 'The club is divided on the subject, and we shall not give our support until three-fourths of the members vote for it.'

The afternoon was not a success. When the last group of members departed Miss Harden watched them from her window with half-sorrowful eyes until they reached the end of the lane; then, turning to her companion she said:

'Send my resignation to the Browning club, and I am never at home to a member of it again.'"

Below is the illustration of the "Women's Civic League" leaving Miss Harden's home.

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Holland's, January 1913

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Holland's Magazine, January 1913, Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Page last modified: June 17, 2011