Members Seek Mall Museum

Posted March 27, 2009 at 3:10pm

The National Mall, home to museums honoring American culture and research in space, science and art, may soon be home to one more national museum. This one would recognize the accomplishments of women in America.

Reps. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.), Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) and Mary Fallin (R-Okla.), and D.C. Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) last week reintroduced the National Women’s History Museum Act. The bill, which is expected to be introduced in the Senate by Susan Collins (R-Maine), would establish a national museum recognizing women’s contributions to American history.

“Less than 5 percent of the 2,400 national historic landmarks chronicle women’s achievement. And of the 210 statues here in the U.S. Capitol, only nine are of female leaders,— Maloney said. “This bill would provide women, comprising 53 percent of our population, a long-overdue home to honor their many contributions to building our great country.—

The plan would not mean new construction on the Mall. The bill would authorize the General Services Administration to sell a vacant lot just off the Mall at 12th Street and Independence Avenue Southwest to the museum at market value. The museum will then be constructed using private funds.

“From the writings of Abigail Adams to the women of the suffrage movement to America’s mothers — women have been at the forefront of shaping our nation’s future,— Capito said. “With this bill we can truly honor their work, remember their sacrifice and teach their many lessons to the next generation of Americans.—

The bill was referred to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, where it awaits action.