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Women's Suffrage (HHH Exhibit): Middle years 1900-1915

Subject guide as a companion to the exhibit at the Hays-Heighe House in February to mark the occasion of the 100 year anniversary of the nineteenth amendment.

Changing of the guard

By the end of the late 1800's and into the early 1900's, most of the original suffragists pass away. A new generation of leaders, many of them daughters, take over.

Harriot Stanton Blatch introduces a much more confrontational style of protest and leads the Equality League of Self-Supporting Women on a 250 mile march from New York City to Washington D.C. on 3/13/1913. Marchers were harassed, ridiculed and grabbed. As the police did not appear to protect the women, this event generated lots of publicity for the women's suffrage movement.

Official program - Woman suffrage procession, Washington, D.C. March 3, 1913

The "Anti's"

The National Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage (NAOWS) gains some momentum in the 1910's. Many men and women were against suffrage based on religious grounds, the perception that it would lead to social depravation, anarchism, and domestic discord, among other things. The liquor, railroad and textile industries allied themselves with the NAOWS because much of the suffragist movement was aligned with temperance and environmental causes.

National Anti-Suffrage Association

Suffrage in the West

As a bid to attract women and their families west, many of the western states granted women suffrage. Wyoming and Utah were first in the 1890's, followed by Washington, California, Oregon, Arizona, and Kansas in the early 1900's.

Southern States Woman Suffrage Conference 1913

Many southern states were only in favor of state by state suffrage legislation as they did not believe in federal amendments. They typically pushed for the vote for white women only or for women with the addition of educational or land-owning requirements which would disqualify many black women from voting.