On Saturday, May 21, 2016, a marker honoring Margaret Fuller was unveiled in Polhill Park in Beacon, NY. Margaret Fuller Society member, scholar, theologian, and educator Michael Barnett spearheaded the effort to commemorate Fuller’s historic visit in the fall of 1844 to what was then Fishkill Landing. She lived here for seven weeks, writing Woman in the Nineteenth Century, a foundational work in the American women’s rights movement. Its publication profoundly impacted women in America and in Europe, and it inspired the 1848 Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, NY. Many thanks go to Michael Barnett, who made this commemoration and event possible by applying to the Pomeroy Foundation for the grant to fund the marker.
Organizing Secretary General of the DAR, and Past President of the Beacon and the Dutchess County Historical Societies Denise Doring VanBuren was the mistress of ceremonies. Mayor of the City of Beacon Randy Casale and Former Beacon Mayor Clara Lou Gould were present at the unveiling.
To commemorate this event, Beacon Arts commissioned a new piece of music for voice and violin by Beacon resident and composer, Debra Kaye. The piece is a setting of Fuller’s poem “Freedom and Truth” (1859). There was a performance of this piece by Vice President of Beacon Arts and soprano Kelly Ellenwood, and violinist Kathleen Bosman.
Many thanks to all who helped make the event possible: Michael Barnett, Kathleen Bosman, Randy Casale, Elizabeth Evans, Kelly Ellenwood, Clara Lou Gould, Carley Hughes, Ella’s Bellas, Carmen Johnson, Debra Kaye, Diane Lapis, Kristine Marino, Bob Meeker, Bob Murphy, Terri Pahucki, Amy Raff, Anthony Thomaselli, The William G. Pomeroy Foundation, Denise Doring VanBuren, Mary Kay Vrba, and the staff of Dutchess Tourism, Inc.
Watch the unveiling here.