OAH Distinguished Lecturer Profile

OAH Distinguished Lectureship program 40 years 1981-2021

Nancy A. Hewitt

Portrait of Nancy A. Hewitt

Born and raised in western New York, Nancy A. Hewitt served as one of the two historians hired to create the first exhibits and tours for the Women's Rights National Historical Park in Seneca Falls, New York, in 1982. Hewitt then taught American history and women's history at the University of South Florida, Duke University, and Rutgers University, and spent a year as Pitt Professor of American History at Cambridge University. Her scholarship focuses on women's activism, broadly defined, and on the interplay of race, class, ethnicity, religion, and gender in the formation and mobilization of social movements. She has published and spoken widely on abolition, women's rights, religious liberty, Quakerism, labor organizing, suffrage, feminism, and civil rights, and on the relations among grassroots and regional movements, national politics, and international activist networks. A recipient of the OAH Roy Rosenzweig Distinguished Service Award, Hewitt has also participated in numerous workshops on women's history and on integrating race and gender into the classroom for middle school, high school, community college, and college teachers.

Featured Lecture

OAH Lectures

Explores the ways that race shaped the women's suffrage movement in the 19th and 20th century in the North and West as well as the South.
Uses the life of Amy Kirby Post--an abolitionist, woman's rights and Indian rights advocate, radical Quaker and spiritualist--to examine the ways that interracial circles of radical activists transformed the political and social landscapes of the antebellum United States.
Wielding a model based on radio waves rather than oceanic waves, this talk suggests new possibilities for engaging diverse forms and moments of feminism to create new narratives of this diverse movement across two centuries.
Focuses on the ways that key women--white, black and Latina--served as regional catalysts for social change by forging connections among disparate groups, transmitting information, assisting individuals in crisis, and raising funds and awareness.