About the Book

A conversation with the authors
00:00 / 26:27

Historical research and original interviews of contemporary women squarely place Philadelphia’s black women on centerstage. The authors document that many of the women worked together directly. Others drew inspiration from those who came before. Their power comes not just from what they did as individuals, but from how their efforts snowballed into a Philadelphia community of women which spanned geographies, sectors, and time.


The words of the book’s contemporary women are memorable. One woman observed that if the authors “had not written this book it wouldn’t have been done.” Another said, “This is who black women are. Not just me, but black women.” The authors’ experiences as activists, researchers and educators—and of frequently being the “only black women in the room”— fills the book not just with facts, but with genuine empathy.

These are the stories of the black women in one of the country’s most important cities, and who let no obstacle deter them from changing the game.

Click on images to shuffle the deck.

Rebecca J. Colechapter6
Goldie Watson, c 1960s_photo by John W M
Edie Huggins (right), c 1960s_photo by J
Caroline R. LeCount1chapter3
Bright, Nellie_photo John W Mosley_Block

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