‘.. an authentic Surinam woman ..’

collection highlight ‘.. an authentic Surinam woman ..’

In 1898, the journalist Elise Haighton wrote:

‘The Column-commission thought that it would be nice, by means of illustration, to bring over a real Surinam woman who could chat a little bit with everybody while selling some preserves, a glass of juice or a cigar’.

The woman in the picture is Louise Yda. The visiting public at the National Exhibition of Women’s Labor 1898 treated her with so much ignorance and bluntness, that Elise Haighton was embarrassed. On the 3rd of September 1898, she published a short interview with Louise Yda:

‘She is born in freedom and gifted with an ample amount of acuteness, self-confidence and a sense of responsibility. It vexed her to be constantly pitied for lending her services to the column ‘the West-Indies’.

Yda stated:

“Please write in your paper that I’m not to be pitied, I knew very well what I was doing.”

Source: Image archive IAV