Framingham City Council Declares March Women’s History Month

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FRAMINGHAM – The Framingham City Council voted to approve a resolution last night, March 15, to declare March Women’s History Month in the City of Framingham.

The proclamation proposed by the City Council Vice Chair Janet Leombruno noted a few significant women from Framingham’s past.

Councilor Leombruno is the first woman City Councilor to hold a leadership role on the City Council. During the first two terms both the chair and the vice chair were men.

This is the second year Leombruno, an at-large City Councilor, has submitted a resolution for Women’s History Month. Last year, her resolution honored Sarah Towne Clayes, Margaret Knight, Josephine Collins and Louise Mayo, Meta Warrick Fuller and Christa Corrigan McAuliffe.

District 9 City Council Tracey Bryant questioned last night while Meta Fuller and Christa McAuliffe were not on the 2022 Resolution. Leombruno noted they were highlighted in the 2021 resolution.

The final vote was 10-1, with Bryant against.

The 2022 resolution is below:

“Since Framingham’s founding, women of all backgrounds have left a lasting impact on the fabric of our community; and

Whereas, Growing up along the south end of Learned Pond during the colonial era, Lydia Learned taught herself how to write poetry. As a teacher in town, she was a prolific writer during a time of limited printing presses and opportunities for women to be published. In 1777 Framingham was shocked by the death of two residents who were struck by a bolt of lightning. Learned wrote a poem mourning this event, it was widely published, and stanzas were inscribed on their headstones found in the Old Burying Ground; and

Whereas, Mary E. Stapleton and Carroll J. Getchell were legends of Saxonville. Stapleton began her teaching career at the Woodrow Wilson School where she later became the principal. In the 1950s, she was the principal at the Jonathan Maynard School, as well as an instructor at Framingham State College. Today, the school in her neighborhood bears her name; and

Whereas, Carroll J. Getchell was the Principal of Stapleton Elementary School for 27 years. Dedicated to her beloved neighborhood, she founded The Friends of Saxonville, which remains an active organization today. In 2001, the Carol J. Getchell Nature Trail was constructed by the Friends of Saxonville, which runs along the Sudbury River and behind Stapleton Elementary School; and

Whereas, Margaret Pearmain Welch made a lasting legacy on the environmental and agricultural landscape of Framingham. A force of nature, she was a writer, world traveler, dancer, socialite, and social justice advocate. Welch co-founded Sterns Farm in 1954 and co-founded the Framingham Friends Meeting House in 1979. Along with Sterns Farm, she donated the 87.1-acre Welch Reservation to the Sudbury Valley Trustees; and

Whereas, Penelope Turton was right by Welch’s side, and made her own lasting imprint on our community. As the co-founder of Sterns Farm, she operated the farm for four decades and taught countless people how to garden organically. In 1990, Turton started a community supported agriculture (CSA) program as part of Stearns Farm, in addition to the farm stand, and still thrives today; and

Whereas, Women throughout our community continue to make Framingham a better place for all. We commemorate their recorded and unrecorded important roles in our society and achievements in history, culture, science, education, and the arts,

Now Therefore, the Mayor and Council declare March 2022 as WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH in Framingham, and we urge all residents to take cognizance of this event and participate fittingly in its observance.


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