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Women’s Rights presentation by Smithsonian scholar Nov. 17-18 at Cultural Heritage Center

Dr. Claire Jerry, lead curator in the Division of Political and Military History at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, will be making presentations about the Women’s Rights Movement in the 1970s on Nov. 17-18 at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. 

Both presentations, entitled “Women’s Rights – What a Difference Half-a-Century Makes!” will begin at 2 p.m. CST in the education room, and the Sunday presentation will be a repeat of Saturday’s. There is no fee to attend either program, but the regular admission fee applies to visitors wanting to go into the museum. All audiences are welcome, but it is suggested that the multimedia presentation is designed for an audience of adults and older teens.    

Jerry’s appearance in Pierre coincides with the special exhibit “The Spirit of the 70s” now on display in the Hogen Gallery at the museum.  

Jerry specializes academically in 20th- and 21st-century campaigning and the history of the presidency. Her previous positions include chief curator of collections and research at McKissick Museum and guest curator at the Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum. Prior to entering the museum field, she was a professor of history and communication at MacMurray College. Jerry holds a Ph.D. in rhetoric and public address and master’s degrees in public history and speech communication. 

“We are especially excited to bring Ms. Jerry to Pierre,” said Museum Director Jay Smith. “Her insights into the Women’s Movement of the 1970s will be lively, entertaining and insightful.”

The 1970s brought new gains into the quest for equal rights between men and women, resulting in advances such as Title IX in the schools, and social change sought through actions like the Equal Rights Amendment. One of the cultural highlights of the decade was the televised tennis match between Bobby Riggs and Billie Jean King, won by King, advertised as “The Battle of the Sexes.”

The museum is open from 9 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. CDT Monday through Saturday, and 1-4:30 p.m. on Sundays and most holidays. Call 605-773-3458 for more information about exhibits, special events and upcoming activities, or visit

About the State Historical Society
The South Dakota State Historical Society is a division of the Department of Education. The State Historical Society, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is headquartered at the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The center houses the society’s world-class museum, the archives, and the historic preservation, publishing and administrative/development offices. Call 605-773-3458 or visit for more information. The society also has an archaeology office in Rapid City; call 605-394-1936 for more information.

About Smithsonian Affiliations
Established in 1996, Smithsonian Affiliations is a national outreach program that develops long-term collaborative partnerships with museums, educational and cultural organizations to enrich communities with Smithsonian resources. The long-term goal of Smithsonian Affiliations is to facilitate a two-way relationship among Affiliate organizations and the Smithsonian Institution to increase discovery and inspire lifelong learning in communities across America. More information about the Smithsonian Affiliations program and Affiliate activity is available at

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