Author Archives: Kathleen Kelly

Kathleen Kelly

About Kathleen Kelly

Kathleen A. Kelly is a freelance writer and performer based in New York City. A lifelong interest in Joan of Arc has led her to travel extensively in Joan’s territory and to create workshop and performance pieces about Joan’s life and times that have been presented at theaters and women’s workshops in New York and at the Joan of Arts festival in New Orleans. She is currently working on a novel about Joan.

Joan of Arc’s Birthday: Reflections On NY Suffrage History

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Inez MilhollandPosterJanuary 6 is Joan of Arc’s 602nd birthday. Not many historical figures, very few of them women, are celebrated 600 years after their birth. But the French teenager who led her country to victory after a century of war, changed its history, and was captured and killed by her enemies is an exception. Inspired by angels and saints, she has become an inspiration to many others, and New Yorkers are no exception.

When New York suffragist Inez Milholland, for example, led the women’s March for the Vote in Washington, DC in March 1913, clad all in white and astride a white horse, she didn’t overtly claim to be impersonating Joan of Arc. The electrifying figure she presented was called “the Herald” or simply “the Woman on a Horse,” an evocation of women in the West who already had the vote or a nod to the moral purity of American temperance leaders who frequently dressed in white. But everyone knew who she really was.  Continue reading