In honor of International Women's Day on March 8, we're turning our spotlight on Marie Equi, the Portland physician and political radical who garnered her share local headlines a century ago. One of the first practicing woman physicians in the Pacific Northwest, she leveraged her professional status to fight for woman suffrage, labor rights, and reproductive freedom. She mounted soapboxes, fought with police, and spent a night in jail with birth control advocate Margaret Sanger. She battled for economic justice at every turn and protested the U.S. entry into World War I, leading to a conviction for sedition and a three-year sentence in San Quentin. Breaking boundaries in all facets of life, she became the first well-known lesbian in Oregon, and her same-sex affairs figured prominently in a U.S. Supreme Court case.
Any time a nationally respected historian and author endorses one of our titles and authors, we celebrate and share the news with our followers. Adam Hochschild did just that for Marie Equi: Radical Politics and Outlaw Passions by Michael Helquist. Hochschild recently toured the country with his new historical epic American Midnight: The Great War, Violent Peace, and Democracy’s Forgotten Crisis. In it he recounts the story less told about the ferocious conflict on U.S. soil between the Wilson Administration and anti-war dissenters before, during, and after World War I. One of those dissidents was Marie Equi, who merits several mentions in Hochshild’s story.
Hochschild referred to Marie Equi in one of his interviews as “An excellent biography, a fine, careful book.” In a follow-up message to Helquist, he wrote, “If you read my recent American Midnight, you’ll see that I rely on you for almost all the information I had about her. A fascinating woman, and you did her justice.” A lecturer at the Graduate School of Journalism at University of California Berkeley, Hocschild also wrote the well-received King Leopold’s Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa and Bury the Chains: Prophets and Rebels in the Fight to Free an Empire’s Slaves, among several other books.
Hochschild isn't the only taking note of Marie Equi. A new Oregon Experience documentary that focuses on her life will begin streaming on Oregon Public Broadcasting and on the Oregon Experience YouTube channel on March 13. For a preview, check out this Oregon Experience clip from 2022.
From now through March 31, we're offering 25% off and free shipping on Marie Equi when you order the book through our website. Enter the promo code MARIE at checkout to receive the discount.
[image: from the Oregonian, May 12, 1919]
Marie Equi in the Classroom: Perpetuating a Legacy by Learning Together
Perhaps one of the most fulfilling experiences for an author is the ability to connect with an audience over the topic of his book. OSU Press author Michael Helquist recently had this opportunity to help shape the young minds of undergraduate students at Washington State University – Vancouver while perpetuating the legacy of an extraordinary woman, Marie Equi. He discussed his book Marie Equi: Radical Politics and Outlaw Passions and was energized by the students' smart questions and engagement with the material. Michael shares his experience below.
Marie Equi Author Receives Best Article Award from Oregon Historical Society
The Oregon Historical Society has named author Michael Helquist the recipient of the 2016 Joel Palmer Award for the best article published in the previous year. Helquist’s article, “”Criminal Operations”: The First Fifty Years of Abortion Trials in Portland, Oregon,” appeared in the Spring 2015 issue of the Oregon Historical Quarterly. The annual prize carries with it a $300 award which will be presented during the annual meeting of OHS on May 21.