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Monday, March 19, 2012

March 19, 1912: Shaw to Pohl -- "Put on Her Brow a Halo or a Laurel Wreath or an Eagle Plume if Possible, But Keep the Money to Push the Work"

Esther Pohl sent a telegram to National American Woman Suffrage Association president Anna Howard Shaw about conflicts in Portland suffrage circles and opposition from Abigail Scott Duniway and her supporters. As per recent posts, Shaw and NAWSA were supporting Pohl and the Portland Woman's Club Campaign Committee because of conflict with and lack of trust of Duniway.

Shaw responded with advice and encouragement on March 19, 1912:

"Anna Shaw to Esther Pohl, March 19, 1912," Amy Khedouri Materials.

Shaw wrote that she had "expected something of this sort," because "as soon as it was known that money was received there would be an eager scramble for it." The NAWSA president advised Pohl, "the thing for us to do is simply to ignore all contentions and all disputes, refuse to dispute with them, refuse to recognize any attach which they make, or to notice in any way any charges that are brought forward. Go on with the good work in which you are busy."

She also advised Pohl to send suffrage literature statewide and discussed campaign finances. And as she closed her letter she returned to advice about moving forward:

Anna Shaw to Esther Pohl, March 19, 1912, 2, Amy Khedouri Materials.

"I think from now on the one thing to do is to ignore the fact that there is any trouble and go right straight ahead as if there were none, and whenever it is possible for you to co-operate with Mrs. Dunniway (sic) do so, show her any courtesy you can, put on her brow a halo or a laurel wreath or an Eagle plume if possible, but keep the money to push the work."