Gold Rush Women is Subject of Gathering
Enterprise
02/20/1998

Ida Rae Egli, editor of No Rooms of Their Own: Women Writers of Early California, will give a lecture, reading and slide presentation titled, "Women's Voices from the Goldfields," March 13 at the Black Bart Playhouse in Murphys beginning at 7pm.

The program is in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the discovery of gold in California and in honor of Women's History Month, and is presented by the American Association of University Women, Calaveras County Historical Society.

Tickets are $5 each. This even is a preface to Murphys Irish Days, which begins March 14.

For advance tickets, send a check payable to the Calaveras 150 Committee to P.O. Box 150, Murphys, CA 95247. Seating is limited. For more information, call Muriel Zeller, 772-1723.

Egli is an educator, writer and fourth generation Californian who grew up in Mendocino County. Her post-graduate research has focused on early California women writers, particularly in Northern California. Her new book, Women of the Far West: The New Penelope and Other Stories, will be available in April. Egli teaches at Santa Rosa Junior College.

No Rooms of Their Own,contains short stories, letters poetry and oral history, through which, as reviewer Karen Peterson Liberatore says, "the doors have been flung open for delicious rediscovery" of the definitive age of California's development.

Women's voices from the past have been lost, silenced by convention or simply ignored. As Egli notes, "The novels and collections of short stories and poetry that women writers had produced during the frontier period slowly slipped further back on library shelves and were eventually sold at Friends of the Library sales for pennies"

"Echo of Images," a small exhibit of eight Mother Lode photographs compiled almost exclusively from the Calaveras Historical Society collection, will be on display for the first time.

The photographs and accompanying quotations were selected by poet and AAUW vice-president Muriel Zeller.

"We would like to see the exhibit become something of a living organism in that it will grow and travel during the next two years of sesquicentennial events and eventually find a permanent home in the county," Zeller said. "We don't want people to lose sight of the fact that the Mother Lode was the place to which everyone was rushing. We are the Gold Country."

The evening will conclude with an author reception and book signing. Dessert and coffee are included in the $5 ticket price.