Women Get Right to Vote
By Sue Schuurman
AUGUST 31, 1998: On Aug. 26, 1920, American women were finally granted the right to vote with the passage of the 19th Amendment. Although 21 foreign countries already enjoyed women's suffrage, many male (and female) citizens feared what the future would bring--especially with the growing popularity of the National Women's Party.
"WASHINGTON--Ratification of the suffrage amendment to the constitution ends a struggle which began in this country before the colonies declared their independence. It will eventually enfranchise 25,000,000 women.
"Woman suffrage first raised its voice in America in Maryland in 1647, when Mistress Margaret Brent, heir of Lord Calvert, demanded a place in the legislature of the colony as a property holder of wide extent. ...
"Organized work for women suffrage began in the United States with the woman's rights convention in Seneca Falls, N.Y., in 1848, which was called by Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. ... Another convention followed in 1852 at Syracuse, N.Y., and it was there that Susan B. Anthony assumed leadership of the cause to which she devoted her life. ...
"The nineteenth amendment, which bears her name, was drafted by Miss Anthony in 1875. ...
"The amendment holds the record of being before the country longer than any other successful amendment to the constitution. ...
"Militancy in the fight for suffrage in America made its appearance in 1913. ... Eight thousand women led by Alice Paul, now the chairman of the (National Women's) party, attempted to march from the capitol to the White House. ... On New Year's Day, 1919, watch fires were lighted in front of the White House in which every speech made by President Wilson in Europe on democracy and self-government was burned. ...
"ALBUQUERQUE--In celebration of the granting of suffrage to women of America, Albuquerque will join in a nation-wide celebration Saturday at noon. ... Whistles and bells will be sounded in Albuquerque, and in every town in the state where there are suffrage sympathizers. ...
"It is also the request of the local committee of the suffrage association that all friends of suffrage decorate their cars with flags. All women are requested to wear small flags pinned upon their coats. ...
"Nearly 30,000 women in this state have been given the vote, thus bringing into politics an element which is causing already a great deal of speculation. ... "
--compiled by Susan Schuurman
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