Objects

The items in this online exhibition evoke the stories of American women through the ages.
Start your exploration with these 32 objects. We will share more as our anniversary year unfolds.
Click on any image to begin.

Birth control pills, n.d.

  Photos by Kevin Grady/Radcliffe Institute

Photos by Kevin Grady/Radcliffe Institute

 

The reproductive rights pioneer Bill Baird (1932– ) has been jailed eight times during half a century of activism to ensure women’s access to birth control and abortion. These pills from Baird’s collection represent victory in the 1972 Supreme Court case Eisenstadt v. Baird. The case stemmed from his high-profile arrest for violating Massachusetts obscenity laws by giving contraceptive foam and a condom to a 19-year-old woman after a lecture at Boston University. Until this ruling, birth control pills and other contraceptives could be prescribed by doctors or distributed by pharmacists to married people only.

Bill Baird Papers, Schlesinger Library

Catalog record:

http://id.lib.harvard.edu/aleph/014436508/catalog

Learn more:

Learn more about the arrival of Bill Baird’s papers at the Library.

Explore the Schlesinger Library’s research guide to abortion, birth control, contraception, and family planning.

 
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Heather Min