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Woman's Suffrage Movements

Updated on December 2, 2017

Woman’s Suffrage Movement

By: Benjamin Williams


The event, the Woman’s Suffrage Movement was the struggle for the right of women to vote. The particular portion of the event being discussed in this article is the picketing that occurred during the movement. This took place in Washington D.C from 1917-1919. The purpose of the event was to “pressure President Woodrow Wilson into supporting the ‘Anthony Amendment’ guaranteeing women the right to vote in all election contests” (Glass, 2017). I think that women were treated unfairly because all they wanted was the right as human beings to vote like men and have input in the direction of the country. They want to have a voice in the country's leadership.


The original fight for women’s rights began in the 1800s with women such as Susan B. Anthony, Sojourner Truth, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. The right to vote is part of the Nineteenth Amendment. “The Nineteenth Amendment was first introduced in Congress in 1878 by Senator Aaron A. Sargent” (Educational Videos for Students, 2016). It was rejected after years of effort to get it voted on. The leaders of the 1917 movement were actually split into two different groups. There was the National American Women’s Association (NAWSA) led by Carrie Chapman Catt. The second group was the National Woman’s Party led by Alice Paul (Andrew Glass, 2017). “Alice Paul called for members of the National Women’s Party to picket the White House to convince the president to put pressure on the Democratic senators to vote in favor of a constitutional suffrage amendment” (Library of Congress, n.d.). In the beginning, the protests were peaceful. “Initially, protesters stood silently, holding placards inscribed with relatively tame messages such as “Mr. President, what will you do for Woman Suffrage?” and “How Long Must Women Wait for Liberty?” (Liberty of Congress, n.d.) The president would tip his hat at them as he rode through the white house gates ignoring the signs in their hands. However, after the first World War in June 1917, the police began arresting women outside the White House. The picketing started with ten suffragists. The number then grew to 218 and ended up being 1000 women from all over the country (Andrew Glass, 2017). Alice Paul even resorted to a hunger strike twice to show how serious she was about women’s rights. A hunger strike is basically when you try to starve yourself. Finally, President Wilson did get involved and the amendment “was passed June 4, 1919, and ratified on August 18, 1920”(Educational Videos for Students, 2016). The amendment that was passed states “The right of the citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex”(Educational Videos for Students, 2016). Why was it a key event? It was a key event because 1)It gave women the right to vote, 2) It started other events that led to better women’s rights, and 3)It allowed them to express how they felt about being unequal.


The women’s suffrage movement changed the course of history. According to Terri Pous, “Most of the pioneering suffragettes died before winning the right to vote…” However, today women are:

1) Treated equally. Women have equal rights to vote as men. A woman even ran for president in our last elections.

2)Women can have the same education as men and attend the same schools. 3)Women can have equal opportunity for work as men. All of this was possible because of the many women who have fought for equality.

Works Cited Page

  1. ( Educational Videos for Kids, 2016)
  2.,28804,2096654_2096653_2096676,00.htm (Terri Pous, 2011)

© 2017 Yuno Kahrot


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