Mary McLeod Bethune Council House National Historic Site

Mary McLeod Bethune Council House National Historic Site Welcome to the official page of the Mary McLeod Bethune Council House National Historic Site, administered by the National Park Service.
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Mary McLeod Bethune achieved her greatest national and international recognition at the Washington, DC townhouse at 1318 Vermont Avenue NW. This Second Empire row house in the Logan Circle neighborhood of Washington, D.C. once belonged to educator, civil rights activist, and presidential adviser Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, and served as the national headquarters for the National Council of Negro Wome

Mary McLeod Bethune achieved her greatest national and international recognition at the Washington, DC townhouse at 1318 Vermont Avenue NW. This Second Empire row house in the Logan Circle neighborhood of Washington, D.C. once belonged to educator, civil rights activist, and presidential adviser Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, and served as the national headquarters for the National Council of Negro Wome

Operating as usual

It’s #TriviaTuesday!  In 1898, Mary McLeod married Albertus Bethune.  Eight years later they separated, but never divorc...
06/08/2021

It’s #TriviaTuesday! In 1898, Mary McLeod married Albertus Bethune. Eight years later they separated, but never divorced. Albertus died in 1918. Who has been a big part of your story?

It’s #TriviaTuesday! In 1898, Mary McLeod married Albertus Bethune. Eight years later they separated, but never divorced. Albertus died in 1918. Who has been a big part of your story?

At some point during the 1940s, Mary McLeod Bethune wrote to a friend: "My mind is overtaxed. Brave and courageous as I ...
06/07/2021

At some point during the 1940s, Mary McLeod Bethune wrote to a friend: "My mind is overtaxed. Brave and courageous as I am, I feel that creeping on of that inevitable thing, a breakdown, if I cannot get some immediate relief. I need somebody to come and get me." When we take too much upon our shoulders, it is almost inevitable that we are going to "break down" under the weight. We have to learn to ask for the help we need. Has there ever been a time in your life where you felt like Mrs. Bethune? Who were the sympathetic ears you found yourself talking to?

Image Credit: Library of Congress

At some point during the 1940s, Mary McLeod Bethune wrote to a friend: "My mind is overtaxed. Brave and courageous as I am, I feel that creeping on of that inevitable thing, a breakdown, if I cannot get some immediate relief. I need somebody to come and get me." When we take too much upon our shoulders, it is almost inevitable that we are going to "break down" under the weight. We have to learn to ask for the help we need. Has there ever been a time in your life where you felt like Mrs. Bethune? Who were the sympathetic ears you found yourself talking to?

Image Credit: Library of Congress

Mary McLeod Bethune served as an advisor to President Calvin Coolidge by participating in a White House Conference on Ch...
06/04/2021

Mary McLeod Bethune served as an advisor to President Calvin Coolidge by participating in a White House Conference on Child Welfare and Housing. Have you ever served in an advisory capacity?

Mary McLeod Bethune served as an advisor to President Calvin Coolidge by participating in a White House Conference on Child Welfare and Housing. Have you ever served in an advisory capacity?

Check out this photo! On April 5, 1968, just one day after the assassination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Pr...
06/03/2021

Check out this photo! On April 5, 1968, just one day after the assassination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., President Lyndon B. Johnson convened a meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House with Civil Rights Leaders. NCNW President Dorothy I. Height was the only woman present at this meeting. Have you experienced a situation when there has only been one woman present? Were you that woman?

Image Credit: LBJ Presidential Library

Check out this photo! On April 5, 1968, just one day after the assassination of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., President Lyndon B. Johnson convened a meeting in the Cabinet Room of the White House with Civil Rights Leaders. NCNW President Dorothy I. Height was the only woman present at this meeting. Have you experienced a situation when there has only been one woman present? Were you that woman?

Image Credit: LBJ Presidential Library

Mary McLeod Bethune once said: “Education is the great American adventure, in the world’s most colossal democratic exper...
06/02/2021

Mary McLeod Bethune once said: “Education is the great American adventure, in the world’s most colossal democratic experiment. Education is the largest public enterprise in the United Sates; in my opinion, the country’s most important business.” Choose five words that can describe your education experience. Do you see or relate to education in the United States as a business?

Image Credit: Library of Congress

Mary McLeod Bethune once said: “Education is the great American adventure, in the world’s most colossal democratic experiment. Education is the largest public enterprise in the United Sates; in my opinion, the country’s most important business.” Choose five words that can describe your education experience. Do you see or relate to education in the United States as a business?

Image Credit: Library of Congress

It’s #TriviaTuesday!  After her passing, the Atlanta Daily World described Bethune’s life as "one of the most dramatic c...
06/01/2021

It’s #TriviaTuesday! After her passing, the Atlanta Daily World described Bethune’s life as "one of the most dramatic careers ever enacted at any time upon the stage of human activity." How do you describe her life?

It’s #TriviaTuesday! After her passing, the Atlanta Daily World described Bethune’s life as "one of the most dramatic careers ever enacted at any time upon the stage of human activity." How do you describe her life?

#RememberingTulsa
05/31/2021

#RememberingTulsa

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre. Last year, John Hope Franklin Reconciliation Park was designated an official member of the African American Civil Rights Network (AACRN), formally recognizing the historical and national significance of the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 and Dr. John Hope Franklin’s work to advance the African American civil rights movement. Read more at https://www.nps.gov/places/oklahoma-john-hope-franklin-reconciliation-park.htm

The African American Civil Rights Network Act authorizes the National Park Service to coordinate and facilitate Federal and non-Federal activities to commemorate, honor, and interpret the history of the African American Civil Rights movement. Learn more about the network at https://www.nps.gov/subjects/civilrights/african-american-civil-rights-network.htm

Image: Located in Tulsa, Oklahoma, a closeup of the Memorial tower in John Hope Franklin Reconciliation Park. Photo courtesy of John Hope Franklin Center for Reconciliation

#MemorialDay
05/31/2021

#MemorialDay

Memorial Day is a time of remembrance for those who lost their lives while serving in the US military. Many memorials and monuments in national parks allow reflection on military service and sacrifice throughout our nation's history. In observance of Memorial Day, spend some time learning about, or revisiting, the incredible stories held in perpetuity within our national parks at https://www.nps.gov/subjects/npscelebrates/memorial-day.htm

If visiting a park, remember to plan ahead and check for changes in operations before departing. Please also see the latest safety guidance for visiting parks and recreating responsibly.

#MaryMcLeodBethune and the National Council of Negro Women, Inc. (NCNW) were some of the major supporters of A. Phillip ...
05/31/2021

#MaryMcLeodBethune and the National Council of Negro Women, Inc. (NCNW) were some of the major supporters of A. Phillip Randolph's March on Washington Movement in 1940 and 1941. The #NCNW mobilized and sent out letters and information to hundreds of women's groups to obtain their participation. #MondaysWithMrsBethune #MarchOnWashingtonMovement #APhillipRandolph

Photo credit: NPS/NABWH

#MaryMcLeodBethune and the National Council of Negro Women, Inc. (NCNW) were some of the major supporters of A. Phillip Randolph's March on Washington Movement in 1940 and 1941. The #NCNW mobilized and sent out letters and information to hundreds of women's groups to obtain their participation. #MondaysWithMrsBethune #MarchOnWashingtonMovement #APhillipRandolph

Photo credit: NPS/NABWH

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil right fighters, or even mayors. Ana Roqué de Du...
05/28/2021

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil right fighters, or even mayors. Ana Roqué de Duprey was a prolific educator, writer, and scientist. In 1917, she founded the first woman’s suffrage organization in Puerto Rico. Known as the “Flower of the Valley” for her work in #botany, she strove to promote educational opportunities and political rights for women in Puerto Rico. #WomensHistory #History #AnaRoquedeDuprey

Photo credit: Public Domain

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil right fighters, or even mayors. Ana Roqué de Duprey was a prolific educator, writer, and scientist. In 1917, she founded the first woman’s suffrage organization in Puerto Rico. Known as the “Flower of the Valley” for her work in #botany, she strove to promote educational opportunities and political rights for women in Puerto Rico. #WomensHistory #History #AnaRoquedeDuprey

Photo credit: Public Domain

Did you know that #MaryMcLeodBethune was listed in TIME Magazine as one of their "100 Women of the Year" in 1934? She on...
05/27/2021

Did you know that #MaryMcLeodBethune was listed in TIME Magazine as one of their "100 Women of the Year" in 1934? She once said: “World peace and brotherhood are based on a common understanding of the contributions and cultures of all races and creeds.”

What are your thoughts about brotherhood and unity? #TBT #History

Photo credit: TIME Magazine

Did you know that #MaryMcLeodBethune was listed in TIME Magazine as one of their "100 Women of the Year" in 1934? She once said: “World peace and brotherhood are based on a common understanding of the contributions and cultures of all races and creeds.”

What are your thoughts about brotherhood and unity? #TBT #History

Photo credit: TIME Magazine

"I plunged into the job of creating something from nothing.... Though I hadn't a penny left, I considered cash money as ...
05/26/2021

"I plunged into the job of creating something from nothing.... Though I hadn't a penny left, I considered cash money as the smallest part of my resources. I had faith in a living God, faith in myself, and a desire to serve." ~ #MaryMcLeodBethune #WednesdayWords #ImbibeIt #Bethunism

Photo credit: Library of Congress

"I plunged into the job of creating something from nothing.... Though I hadn't a penny left, I considered cash money as the smallest part of my resources. I had faith in a living God, faith in myself, and a desire to serve." ~ #MaryMcLeodBethune #WednesdayWords #ImbibeIt #Bethunism

Photo credit: Library of Congress

It’s #TriviaTuesday!  Mary McLeod Bethune’s Last Will & Testament included, “I leave you love. I leave you hope. I leave...
05/25/2021

It’s #TriviaTuesday! Mary McLeod Bethune’s Last Will & Testament included, “I leave you love. I leave you hope. I leave you the challenge of developing confidence in one another. I leave you a thirst for education. I leave you respect for the use of power. I leave you faith. I leave you racial dignity. I leave you a desire to live harmoniously with your fellow men. I leave you finally a responsibility to our young people.” What do you want to leave behind?

It’s #TriviaTuesday! Mary McLeod Bethune’s Last Will & Testament included, “I leave you love. I leave you hope. I leave you the challenge of developing confidence in one another. I leave you a thirst for education. I leave you respect for the use of power. I leave you faith. I leave you racial dignity. I leave you a desire to live harmoniously with your fellow men. I leave you finally a responsibility to our young people.” What do you want to leave behind?

In 1949, #MaryMcLeodBethune was invited to #Haiti to receive the highest Haitian civilian honor, the “Medal of Honor and...
05/24/2021

In 1949, #MaryMcLeodBethune was invited to #Haiti to receive the highest Haitian civilian honor, the “Medal of Honor and Merit.” In 1952, she also traveled to #Liberia, as a representative of President Harry S. Truman, where she received the “Commander of the Order of the Star of Africa,” Liberia’s highest medal. #MondayswithMrsBethune

Photo credits: Bethune-Cookman University and JET Magazine (Johnson Publishing Company)

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil right fighters, or even mayors. East Harlem’s A...
05/21/2021

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil right fighters, or even mayors. East Harlem’s Afro-Latina Julia de Burgos, was a legendary poet and women's rights activist. She once wrote: “I am life, strength, woman”.

Tell us, who are the strong women that inspire you every day? #WomensHistory #History #JuliadeBurgos

Photo credit: Public Domain

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil right fighters, or even mayors. East Harlem’s Afro-Latina Julia de Burgos, was a legendary poet and women's rights activist. She once wrote: “I am life, strength, woman”.

Tell us, who are the strong women that inspire you every day? #WomensHistory #History #JuliadeBurgos

Photo credit: Public Domain

For every student close to graduation out there, remember these words from Mrs. Bethune: “Education is the great America...
05/20/2021

For every student close to graduation out there, remember these words from Mrs. Bethune: “Education is the great American adventure, the world's most colossal democratic experiment.” ~ #MaryMcLeodBethune #TBT #Education #GraduationSeason

Photo credit: Bethune-Cookman University

For every student close to graduation out there, remember these words from Mrs. Bethune: “Education is the great American adventure, the world's most colossal democratic experiment.” ~ #MaryMcLeodBethune #TBT #Education #GraduationSeason

Photo credit: Bethune-Cookman University

"If we accept and acquiesce in the face of discrimination, we accept the responsibility ourselves. We should, therefore,...
05/19/2021

"If we accept and acquiesce in the face of discrimination, we accept the responsibility ourselves. We should, therefore, protest openly everything...that smacks of discrimination or slander." ~ #MaryMcLeodBethune #WednesdayWords #ImbibeIt #Bethunism

Photo credit: Public Domain

"If we accept and acquiesce in the face of discrimination, we accept the responsibility ourselves. We should, therefore, protest openly everything...that smacks of discrimination or slander." ~ #MaryMcLeodBethune #WednesdayWords #ImbibeIt #Bethunism

Photo credit: Public Domain

It’s #TriviaTuesday!  Did you know Mary McLeod Bethune passed away #OnThisDate in 1955?  She was 79.  Her legacy lives o...
05/18/2021

It’s #TriviaTuesday! Did you know Mary McLeod Bethune passed away #OnThisDate in 1955? She was 79. Her legacy lives on.

How do you continue her legacy?

It’s #TriviaTuesday! Did you know Mary McLeod Bethune passed away #OnThisDate in 1955? She was 79. Her legacy lives on.

How do you continue her legacy?

Did you know the month of May is Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month?#MaryMcLeodBethune c...
05/17/2021

Did you know the month of May is Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month?

#MaryMcLeodBethune collected autographed portraits of well-known men and women with whom she met throughout her career as an educator, activist, and public servant that inspired her, and these portraits hung on her wall in her office at her beloved home she called “The Retreat” located on the campus of her school, Bethune-Cookman College, now University. One such autographed portrait that hung was of Madame Vijaya Lakshmi Nehru Pandit of India. Born in 1900 in Allahabad in the North-Western Provinces of British India, she became the first Indian woman to hold a cabinet post when she was elected to the provincial legislature of the United Provinces of British India in 1937. She was also designated the minister of local self-government and the minister of public health.

After India gained independence from Great Britain in 1947, Madame Pandit became the Indian Ambassador to the Soviet Union and the Ambassador to the United States and to Mexico from 1949 to 1951, among many other notable positions. In 1949, Mrs. Bethune and the #NCNW presented her with an award for her outstanding contributions to the world and for her example of leadership to all women.

Have you come across people in your career that have inspired you? #MadamePandit #AANHPIHM #AsianPacificAmericanHeritageMonth #EncuentraTuParque

Photo credits: Library of Congress (top), Central Florida Memory/University of Central Florida (bottom)

Did you know the month of May is Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month?

#MaryMcLeodBethune collected autographed portraits of well-known men and women with whom she met throughout her career as an educator, activist, and public servant that inspired her, and these portraits hung on her wall in her office at her beloved home she called “The Retreat” located on the campus of her school, Bethune-Cookman College, now University. One such autographed portrait that hung was of Madame Vijaya Lakshmi Nehru Pandit of India. Born in 1900 in Allahabad in the North-Western Provinces of British India, she became the first Indian woman to hold a cabinet post when she was elected to the provincial legislature of the United Provinces of British India in 1937. She was also designated the minister of local self-government and the minister of public health.

After India gained independence from Great Britain in 1947, Madame Pandit became the Indian Ambassador to the Soviet Union and the Ambassador to the United States and to Mexico from 1949 to 1951, among many other notable positions. In 1949, Mrs. Bethune and the #NCNW presented her with an award for her outstanding contributions to the world and for her example of leadership to all women.

Have you come across people in your career that have inspired you? #MadamePandit #AANHPIHM #AsianPacificAmericanHeritageMonth #EncuentraTuParque

Photo credits: Library of Congress (top), Central Florida Memory/University of Central Florida (bottom)

Over the course of her life, #MaryMcLeodBethune received 11 honorary degrees from Black and white colleges—including Rol...
05/17/2021

Over the course of her life, #MaryMcLeodBethune received 11 honorary degrees from Black and white colleges—including Rollins College, where she was the first African American to receive such an honor in the entire South. #MondayswithMrsBethune

Mary McLeod Bethune with Rollins College president, Hamilton Holt
Photo credits: Bethune-Cookman University and Rollins College

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil rights fighters, or even mayors. Pioneer Latina...
05/14/2021

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil rights fighters, or even mayors. Pioneer Latina woman Luisa Capetillo, was a reporter for the American Federation of Labor and a member of the #SuffrageMovement. She took upon herself the responsibility of educating women about their labor rights. While in Tampa, Florida, she organized workers and published “My opinion on women’s freedoms, rights and duties”.

She once wrote: "So we who preach and desire a fraternal world should not issue insults, nor attempt to dishonor our neighbor. If indeed we are brothers. Otherwise we will never come to practice fraternity. This does not mean that we should hide the truth, no; abuse, hypocrisy, meanness, any kind of farce must be exposed, because, for the mere fact that we are brothers, we must make others understand that we know our rights, and that if they trample on those rights, we have the right to remind them that we are incensed by the injustice of it." #WomensHistory #History #LuisaCapetillo

Photo credit: Public Domain

For this #FeatureFriday, let us introduce you to educators, poets, civil rights fighters, or even mayors. Pioneer Latina woman Luisa Capetillo, was a reporter for the American Federation of Labor and a member of the #SuffrageMovement. She took upon herself the responsibility of educating women about their labor rights. While in Tampa, Florida, she organized workers and published “My opinion on women’s freedoms, rights and duties”.

She once wrote: "So we who preach and desire a fraternal world should not issue insults, nor attempt to dishonor our neighbor. If indeed we are brothers. Otherwise we will never come to practice fraternity. This does not mean that we should hide the truth, no; abuse, hypocrisy, meanness, any kind of farce must be exposed, because, for the mere fact that we are brothers, we must make others understand that we know our rights, and that if they trample on those rights, we have the right to remind them that we are incensed by the injustice of it." #WomensHistory #History #LuisaCapetillo

Photo credit: Public Domain

Address

1318 Vermont Ave NW
Washington D.C., DC
20005

Nearby Metro Stations: McPherson Square (Blue/Orange) U Street (Green)

General information

This is the official page of the Mary McLeod Bethune Council House National Historic Site, administered by the National Park Service. While this is an open forum, it is also a family friendly one, so please keep your comments and wall posts clean. In addition, we ask that you follow our posting guidelines here. If you do not comply, your message will be removed. We do not allow graphic, obscene, explicit or racist comments or submissions, nor do we allow comments that are abusive, hateful or intended to defame anyone or any organization. We do not allow solicitations or advertisements. This includes promotion or endorsement of any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. Similarly, we do not allow attempts to defame or defraud any financial, commercial or non-governmental agency. We do not allow comments that suggest or encourage illegal activity. Second violation of these guidelines will result in the user being blocked from the page. You participate at your own risk, taking personal responsibility for your comments, your username and any information provided. Posting of external links on this site that are intended as advertising (or to drive traffic to websites unrelated to the Mary McLeod Bethune Council House NHS), or do not contribute to dialog and discussions about the Mary McLeod Bethune Council House NHS may be deleted. People who continue to post such links may be subject to page participation restrictions and/or removal from the page. External links do not constitute official endorsement on behalf of the U.S. National Park Service or the U.S. Department of Interior.

Opening Hours

Thursday 9am - 5pm
Friday 9am - 5pm
Saturday 9am - 5pm

Telephone

(202) 673-2402

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