Thursday, November 16, 2017

Play Like a Girl: A History of Athletics at Rosemont College, 1960-1990

Play Like a Girl: A History of Athletics at Rosemont College, 1960 - 1990

IMG_7327.JPGThis is the second of what I hope will be 3 exhibits on athletics at Rosemont. Archives Assistant, Emily Siegel, ‘14, curated the first part of this exhibit, which portrayed Rosemont athletics from 1923 - 1960. It showed that women’s colleges were places where women could be athletic, in a safe, accepting environment, during a time when this may have been frowned upon in other places.This was eye-opening to me.

I had a similar realization over the summer, when I saw the movie Wonder Woman. I was moved by its portrayal of strong, athletic women, which was not salacious. I hadn’t realized the novelty of this image until I saw it there. Diana and her sisters enjoyed their athleticism and physical strength. They were confident in it. I wanted to select photos of Rosemont students who were enjoying themselves, strong and proud and excelling in sports; who displayed the same attributes as those fictional women.

The 60’s saw many advances in women’s rights. Title IX was enacted in 1972. Yes, we’ve come a long way, but women still strive to be taken seriously in the sports arena (and in others). I hope that this series of exhibits will encourage further thought and discussion on that subject within the Rosemont community.

Elena Sisti

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Dr. Gold's Connelly Lecture

Pierce Connelly lecture 001.JPGOn Wednesday, November 1, we had the distinct pleasure of hosting Dr. Susanna Gold at the Gertrude Kistler Memorial Library at Rosemont College. She gave an informative lecture on the works of Pierce Francis “Frank” Connelly, son of Cornelia Connelly who was the foundress of the Society of the Holy Child of Jesus.

Dr. Gold laid out Frank’s journey through the arts in Italy as well as his entrance into the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia, PA in 1876. She discussed his works of art that were on display prominently at the Exhibition. The piece that drew the most interest was very different from the rest of Frank Connelly’s work. Most of his sculptures were neoclassical style, women sculptures, while the piece that was the focus of the talk was much different.  "Honor Arresting the Triumph of Death," is a group composition that features six different figures:  Death, Death’s horse, Strength, Courage, Perseverance and Hope. Dr. Gold discusses how this piece, unlike others at the exhibit that portrayed aspects of the Civil War in the United States of America, touched everyone and allowed for the focus on the sacrifice of human life rather than the sides of the war. Most of Connelly’s work was sold at this exhibition Dr. Gold noted, except for this one piece.  

An article in The Rambler relays the story of how the sculpture came to Rosemont college. In the summer of 1939, Rev. Mother Provincial and Rev Mother Ignatius traveled to Rome where the meet Frank's daughter, Mariana who later became Princess Borghese. She felt that the sculpture should be in the hands of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus and gifted it to Rosemont College. The sculpture has been in various places on the campus and is currently close to the science building.

If you would like to learn more about Frank Connelly or his work, schedule an appointment with our archives department or you can check out Dr. Gold's book The unfinished exhibition: Visualizing myth, memory and the Civil War in centennial America from the Gertrude Kistler Memorial Library.

Unknown. (1939, October 13). Princess Borghese presents statue: Group was executed by F.P.

Connelly. The Rambler.