Beginning as early as the 1800s women organized, petitioned and picketed to win the right to vote; however, it took them decades to make it happen. An amendment was first introduced in Congress in 1878; however, it was not until 1920 that it was passed and ratified. Even though 9 western states had individually passed suffrage acts by 1912, many opponents challenged the male-only voting laws in court. Often supporters of the Suffragists Movement were hackled, jailed and even physically abused for their stand. New York became the change-agent when it adopted woman suffrage in 1917. It was only then that President Wilson changed his position to support an amendment in 1918 and the political balance began to shift in favor of a woman’s right to vote.
Finally, the House of Representatives passed the amendment in 1919 with the Senate following 2 weeks later. The amendment passed its final hurdle by obtaining the consent of three-fourths of the states in 1920. With the ratification on August 26th, the face of the American electorate was changed forever.
As we move through this election year in 2016, let us not forget how important these women are and what they accomplished for our country and the example they set for the rest of the world as well. We need to honor them in every way possible!