How Did the General Federation of Women's Clubs Shape Women's Involvement
in the Conservation Movement, 1900-1930?

Abstract

      The American conservation movement, with its sense of public responsibility for the protection of America's natural resources and beauty, reflected the social consciousness of the Progressive Era. Middle- and upper-class white women, who participated in many Progressive reform efforts, were important players in the conservation movement. Through local, state, and national women's clubs, as well as through various conservation and outdoor organizations, women became involved in conservation campaigns ranging from planting trees to creating national parks. Women's conservation efforts sometimes drew on popular support for protection of wildlife, natural resources, and places of natural beauty, thereby offering a bridge between the male elite leaders of the conservation movement and a wider audience. This project focuses specifically on the activities of middle- and upper-class white female reformers. It addresses the question of how the women's club movement encouraged and shaped women's involvement in the conservation movement as well as the influence of women's networks on the success of conservation campaigns between 1890 and 1930.

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