Visit to the Capitol

April 15, 2013 in 1960s-1970s

picture of Eleanor Jordan

Eleanor Jordan

This week I visited Kentucky’s state capitol, Frankfort.  The reason for this trip was to attend the Fair Housing Proclamation which commemorated the signing of the Fair Housing Act forty five years ago.  Prior to the proclamation, my class and I met with Eleanor Jordan, Kentucky’s Commissioner on Women.

Our meeting with Eleanor Jordan was quite insightful.  Speaking with her made me realize that although women are considered entirely equal legally and most of us do not think about gender discrimination being prominent in the workplace and other circumstances we encounter daily.  Jordan told us about her office’s attempts to get two statues of women in the capitol building and the troubles they were facing.  She also brought up a very important point.  When touring the capitol there are not statues or busts of women, nor were there any exhibits in entire building highlighting the accomplishments of the state’s women prior to the exhibit begun by past women holding her current office.  Prior to having the Kentucky Women Remembered Exhibit, the only time women were highlighted in the capitol was in the cases displaying the first ladies’ dresses.  Their contributions to the state were not mentioned.  After our discussion, Jordan led us through the exhibit and highlighted her favorite portraits.

We then moved to the rotunda of the capitol building where we heard several people speak on the importance of the Fair Housing Act.  Again, I learned how important that act was, not only when it originally came out, but now as well.  I have learned about the bombing of the Wade house and the discrimination they faced, but failed to realize acts of discrimination still occur.  Some of the speakers had actually encountered acts of discrimination in the past which made the presentation really come to life.

Overall, my trip to the capitol was very educational and insightful.  I appreciate being given the opportunity to visit the capitol and all of the people I was able to meet.

3 responses to Visit to the Capitol

  1. Great summary of your experiences on the field trip to Frankfort! and here’s a list of housing laws for us to continue thinking about as we remember the legacy of Mae Street Kidd:

  2. I certainly believe that the personal experiences shared by the speakers helped us to have a better understanding of the context surrounding the original legislation of the Fair Housing Bill. Imagine what we could learn if we could talk with many of the women we are studying in class who have already passed — their histories deserve to be recorded!

  3. It was great to read about your view on our field trip to Frankfort. We are lucky we were able to participate in such an interesting event! Hopefully next time we visit we will get to look at statues of Kentucky women too.

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