‘Suffrage’ mural brings awareness to 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment
HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - Hattiesburg Alliance for Public Art (HAPA) has a new mural joining the growing public arts collection in the downtown Hattiesburg area.
Heidi Pitre says she was doing an art show in Hattiesburg when mayor Toby Barker approached her about recreating her woman’s suffrage painting as a mural.
After nine long days of painting, the ‘Suffrage’ mural was finished.
The mural showcases awareness of the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment protecting women’s constitutional right to vote.
“These women would set up tables in grocery stores, in shopping malls and places where men didn’t really go, especially back then,” Pitre said. “They were helping women register to vote right there in the grocery store. That’s why she’s hiding stuff behind her back. On one hand, she’s going to the grocery store, she has her grocery list. On the other hand, she has on her shopping glove and she’s secretly holding her voter registration application so that she can go get her card so she can legally vote.”
It includes a tribute to the women who have served in both Forrest County and the city of Hattiesburg.
“I think it was a great idea and a great way to pay tribute to those women,” Pitre said. “It had to be hard, especially, 50 to 70 years ago, a woman running for any kind of office, it’s just way braver than I could ever imagine.”
Pitre says it was an honor to create something that brings awareness to something women worked so hard to achieve.
“My daughters, or other younger people, they have no idea, for the most part, how hard it was back then,” Pitre said. “Things today are taken for granted because you can vote, you’ve always been able to vote and that’s not how it was.”
The mural is located on McLeod Street beside the Thirsty Hippo.
This is the third mural Pitre has completed in Hattiesburg. One located at Moore’s Bike Shop and the other on the façade of Grove Transit.
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