Center for Women's History

Explore women's history through exhibitions, programs, scholarship, and immersive multimedia.

About the center

Our new Center for Women’s History—the first of its kind in the nation within the walls of a major museum—reveals the untold stories of women who have shaped and continue to shape the American experience. As a hub for scholarship and education, the new Center demonstrates how women across the spectrum of race, class, and culture exercised power and effected change before they could even access the ballot box. Guided by a committee of distinguished historians and informed by the latest research, the Center features permanent installations, temporary exhibitions, and a vibrant array of talks and programs, enriching the cultural landscape of New York City and ushering in a new era of historical discovery.

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Thank you for your interest in the Center for the Study of Women's History at the New-York Historical Society. Please enter your email to receive occasional updates about our programs and exhibitions.

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"Miss Rose Bower of North Dakota" Woman playing trumpet, wearing "Votes for Women" sash. Gelatin Silver Photograph, New-York Historical Society.

Major funding for the Center for Women's History programs provided by

Joyce B. Cowin
Diane and Adam E. Max
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
Jean Margo Reid
The Estate of Jean Dubinsky Appleton
Eric J. & Daria L. Wallach
Deutsche Bank
Claudine and Fred Bacher
James Basker and Angela Vallot
The Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation
Hogan Lovells
The Caroline M. Lowndes Foundation

Public funding for the Center for Women’s History
provided by

New York City Department of Cultural Affairs,
in partnership with the City Council

Empire State Development and I LOVE NEW YORK
under Governor Andrew Cuomo’s
Regional Economic Development Council Initiative

Saving Washington
March 8 – July 30, 2017

The inaugural exhibition in the Joyce B. Cowin Gallery, Saving Washington recasts the traditional Founding Fathers narrative to uncover the less-examined contributions of women of the early republic. Through more than 150 objects as well as innovative digital interactives, the exhibition reveals how women in the young United States, such as First Lady Dolley Madison, became powerful forces for leadership and shaped American democracy. Learn more about the exhibition, on view now.


The Duchess of Carnegie Hall: Photographs by Editta Sherman
August 25, 2017 – January 8, 2018
Editta Sherman lived and worked above Carnegie Hall from the late 1940s to 2010, photographing thousands of celebrity portraits―actors, writers, poets, and musicians―in classic black-and-white style. Referred to as the “Duchess of Carnegie Hall” by her dear friend Bill Cunningham, Editta Sherman was featured as the sole model of his 1970s Facades series, exploring period fashions against the architectural history of New York City. Fifty selections from the Editta Sherman Archive, donated to New-York Historical by her children, will showcase Sherman’s signature style as she captured luminaries such as actor Yul Brenner, author William F. Buckley, Jr., and poet Carl Sandberg through her lens. 

N​ovember 3, 2017 - March 28, 2018
This exhibition brings to life the vibrant Greenwich Village bohemian scene of the 1910s, and the work of women artists and radicals within it. It shows how this unique hotbed of multicultural and cross-class activism reenergized the women’s suffrage movement, and led it to victory in New York State in 1917.

Creative: Tronvig Group