Jean Ellis has spent over a year piecing together an important part of Calumet history. Her exhibit at the Heritage Center, Discover a Womanâ??s Place, delves into the lives of the nearly 14,600 women in Calumet Township from 1910 to 1914.
Ellis said in the midst of her studies, she found a few of her analyses surprising.
â??This was not a community of recent immigrants,â?? said Ellis. â??Sixty-nine percent of the females in Calumet Township were born in the United States.â??
The Heritage Center walks through different career fields such as teachers, store owners, and nurses, as well as the home life of women.
A single, nameless silhouette portrays the essence of the whole exhibit.
â??We did not want to focus on any individual,â?? Ellis said. â??So, sheâ??s really symbolic. She does not represent an age group, she does not represent an ethnic group. She represents the women.â??
Ellis said the goal of the exhibit was to encourage people to dig deeper into the areaâ??s history and to never stop asking questions.
â??Our hope was not to minimize what other people did, but rather to fill out the picture of the community,â?? Ellis explained. â??As we learn more about the community, we learn more about our own heritage, and we think thatâ??s really important.â??
The exhibit is open at the Heritage Center, Monday through Friday from 1 p.m. until 4:30 p.m. through Labor Day.