Surrounded by the board and staff of the Cayman Islands National Museum, Georgette Ebanks was presented with the first Ira Thompson Award in recognition of her significant contributions to the preservation of Cayman’s history.

Ms. Ebanks’s daughters Anita Ebanks and Laura Henry, and Ira Thompson’s daughters Maxine Marshall and Laverne Daykin, were also at the event on May 3.

Museum board Chairman Alfonso Wright expressed gratitude for Ms. Ebanks’s contributions to Cayman and for allowing the museum to exhibit her story and heirlooms for the people of Cayman and visitors to see, a press release states.

Mr. Thompson’s daughters said they know how proud their father would have been to learn that Ms. Ebanks was the first recipient of the award established in his name.

Ms. Ebanks, nee Hurlston, was pivotal in women receiving the right to vote in the Cayman Islands. She was one of the signatories of an Aug. 19, 1948 letter to the Cayman Islands commissioner, noting that after reviewing the Constitution, women intended to exercise their right to vote. The women’s efforts were eventually rewarded with the passing of the Women’s Suffrage Act in 1958, and Ms. Ebanks seized the occasion to emphatically encourage all those who could to go out and vote in the election on May 24.

Georgette Ebanks points to her signature on a reproduction of the Aug. 19, 1948 letter to the Cayman Islands commissioner, noting that women intended to exercise their right to vote.

During the event, Ms. Ebanks shared a memory with Mr. Wright, showing him a graduation photo of herself. Ms. Ebanks also spoke with young museum staff members, including Shenice McField, who thanked Ms. Ebanks for paving the way for women such as herself.

To learn more, email [email protected] or call 949-8368.

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