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Women's Suffrage Movement

The women’s suffrage movement was the struggle for the right of women to vote and run for office and is part of the overall women’s rights movement in the United States. It took activists and reformers nearly 100 years to win that right. On August 18, 1920, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was finally ratified, enfranchising all American women.


 

A group of New York suffragists hold umbrellas at Washington Square, inviting people to join them for a march demanding equal voting rights for women in the United States, on May 4, 1912. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection  

Stanford suffragettes participate in Silent Sentinel protest at the White House, circa 1917-1919. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress.

Suffragist Susan Walker Fitzgerald puts up posters by the College Equal Suffrage League to attract supporters for the movement. In 1923, Fitzgerald and Sylvia Donaldson became the first two women to be elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/ George Grantham Bain Collection

Suffragist and social economist Mary Edith Campbell was the first woman elected to the Board of Education in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 1911. Campbell was also the first president of the Woman’s City Club of Greater Cincinnati, and a charter member of the Juvenile Protective Association and the Cincinnati League of Women Voters. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Florence Jaffray Hurst “Daisy” Harriman, chairperson and founder of the Women’s National Wilson and Marshall Organization for supporting Woodrow Wilson for U.S. President, distributes campaign buttons during a rally in New York City, on August 20, 1912. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Abigail Scott Duniway (center), remembered as Oregon’s “Mother of Equal Suffrage” and “the pioneer woman suffragist of the great Northwest,” signs Oregon’s Equal Suffrage Proclamation on November 30, 1912, in the presence of Governor Oswald West and Viola M. Coe, acting president of the Oregon State Equal Suffrage Association. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Women participate in a suffrage procession in Washington, D.C., on March 3, 1913. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Dr. Anna Howard Shaw, president of the National American Woman’s Suffrage, was the first living American woman to be awarded the U.S. Distinguished Service Medal. She was also a masterful orator and the first ordained Methodist woman preacher. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Members of women band march during the suffrage parade in Washington, D.C., on March 3, 1913. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Woman suffragists in front of the Treasury Building during the parade in Washington, D.C., on March 3, 1913. Photograph courtesy Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Suffrage hikers who took part in the suffrage hike from New York City to Washington, D.C., which joined the March 3, 1913, Woman Suffrage Procession. Photograph by Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Suffragists Rose Sanderman (center) and Elizabeth Freeman (right) enroute the Woman Suffrage Procession in Washington, D.C. Photograph by Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection

Over 20,000 women marched in the pre-election parade for suffrage in New York City on October 23, 1915. Photograph by Library of Congress/George Grantham Bain Collection