This week marks 100 years since the 19th Amendment declared voting a right regardless of sex. This is an important and monumental anniversary, but it’s important to remember that not all women were able to vote as a result of the 19th Amendment.
Many women would still have to navigate lots of laws—based on age, citizenship, literacy and much more that could keep them from the polls.
“The women who showed up to register to vote in the fall of 1920 confronted many hurdles. Racism was the most significant one,” as historian Martha S. Jones stated in a recent National Geographic article. Legislatures in the South made laws that basically disenfranchised most Black Americans, even after the 15th Amendment. Poll taxes, literacy tests, and grandfather clauses kept many Black American from casting their ballots.
This anniversary is a huge milestone that should be recognized and celebrated. But it’s also valuable to take time to continue reading and learning about the Suffrage movement– including about those who weren’t included. Here are some resources to keep learning!
- Suffrage at 100: A Visual History– The New York Times
- Women’s Vote Centennial– Resources and Quizzes
- For Black Women, the 19th Amendment Didn’t End Their Fight to Vote– National Geographic
- The Root: How Racism Tainted Women’s Suffrage– NPR
- Women’s Vote 100 Learning Resources
- How Black Women Won the Right to Vote– Time Magazine