Question of the Week
Anna Blakiston Day served as president of which women's committee?
Answer: Women’s Committee for the City Party
Even before they won the right to vote, a group of women found a way to make their voices heard in Philadelphia. In 1905, they formed the Women’s Committee for the City Party, which worked to clean up the city’s corrupt political landscape and reform city government.
Anna Blakiston Day served as president of the Women’s Committee for the City Party. Wife to architect Frank Miles Day and a member of the Blakiston publishing family, Day was a supporter of reform politics who worked with several other Philadelphia women’s organizations, including the Civic Club and the Committee on the Cause and Cure of War.
The City Party disbanded in March of 1907, but the Women’s Committee (more than 4,000 members strong) continued its work and reorganized with a new name: the Women’s Committee for Good Government (which later changed to the Women’s League for Good Government). It once again saw Day’s involvement, this time as one of the league’s five-member executive committee. In 1911 the group campaigned for the reform candidate for Philadelphia mayor, Rudolph Blankenberg. After Blankenberg’s election, the league continued to assist voters and ardently supported other reform candidates. Day passed away in 1952, and shortly thereafter, an elementary school in Germantown was renamed in her honor.
The Anna Blanchard Blakiston Day papers (#1924) at HSP contain records from the Women's Committee for the City Party and Women's League for Good Government. The collection also contains correspondence, bills and receipts, deeds, papers from Day's estate and the estates of other Blakiston family members.
About the Author
Look for these history stories every Sunday in the Philadelphia Inquirer. The stories, called Memory Stream, are published in the Currents section of the newspaper.