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Virtual Lecture: Franco American Women’s Suffrage

April 2 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 pm


You are invited to attend an upcoming Virtual presentation

Franco American Suffragist Movement by Rhea Côté Robbins

Thursday, April 2 at 10:00 a.m.

Join from PC, Mac, Linux, iOS or Android: https://maine.zoom.us/j/682070974

Or Telephone:

US: +1 312 626 6799  or +1 646 876 9923 or +1 301 715 8592  or +1 346 248 7799 or +1 408 638 0968 or +1 669 900 6833  or +1 253 215 8782

Meeting ID: 682 070 974


In this virtual talk, Rhea Côté Robbins will examine the Franco American suffragist movement. She will start with information on Canadian women’s suffrage and compare it to what was happening in the United States. She will then focus on Camille Lessard Bissonnette and explore the reasons why this Franco American woman was not on the radar for the Maine women’s suffrage in the early 1900s. She will talk about her own work getting Camille Lessard Bissonnette into the exhibit on women’s suffrage at the Maine State Museum. She will end her talk looking at the women who have served in the Maine State Legislature through the years in order to connect the past to the present.



Rhea Côté Robbins was brought up bilingually in a Franco-American neighborhood in Waterville known as the South End. She currently lives in South Brewer. Côté Robbins is the author of creative nonfiction, memoirs titled, ‘down the Plains,’ and Wednesday’s Child, winner of the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance Chapbook Award and taught in many university/college courses. She is editor of Canuck and Other Stories, an anthology of translations of early 20th century Franco-American women writers who wrote about their immigration experience. 
She is the founder and director of the Franco-American Women’s Institute, FAWI, which disseminates information about the contributions of the French heritage women’s lives. FAWI celebrated its 20th Anniversary in 2016. She edited an anthology—a collection of 130 French heritage women’s submitted works to celebrate FAWI’s 20th Anniversary, titled, Heliotrope—French Heritage Women Create! This book project was crowdfunded by the Franco-American community’s many supporters.  Heliotrope was a finalist in the MWPA Anthology competition.

Côté Robbins’ writing and research has appeared in many publications. She is Creative Non-fiction editor for Résonance, the open-access electronic, curated, editor-reviewed literary journal that seeks to encourage, showcase, and disseminate creative works by established and emerging writers, primarily by and/or about the Franco-American communities of the United States.  She is currently working on research in expanding the definition of the French heritage women and their “hidden contributions.”



April 2
10:00 am - 11:00 pm