The Woman’s Page – November 24, 1916

November 24, 1916

“Mrs. Stokes is well-known as an ardent Socialist, feminist and humanitarian, and for the romance which in 1905 culminated in her marriage to James Graham Phelps Stokes, New York millionaire.”

At the end of “The Woman’s Page,” following letters and editorials, one could find the usual society page announcements (e.g. “Mr. and Mrs. L.E. Manolson were guests at the Hotel Astor during their stay in New York,” “Miss Blanche Semmelman of Dayton, Ohio, is visiting Miss Flora Ash, Montrose ave., Westmount, and will remain a few weeks.” ) as well as advertisements for upcoming concerts and Jewish-related news. 

Perusing the ads, I was intrigued by the mention of a new book by Mrs. Rose Pastor Stokes, described as “a tense, terse little play with motherhood rights and social and industrial limitations for its basis.” Rose Pastor Stokes would indeed have been a compelling figure for readers of The Woman’s Page.  She could be admired for her social activism, in the spirit of Jewish commitment to justice, as well as her successful marriage to a fabulously wealthy man.   Unlike many women crusaders of the time, who came from the ranks of the bourgeoisie, Rose Pastor Stokes began life as a cigar-factory worker, was “entirely self-educated,” and lived by her own means until her fairytale romance and marriage.  Her apparent fulfillment/achievements in both the public and private spheres of life would have been remarkable and much-admired by her Jewish and gentile contemporaries alike. 

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