The year 2020 marks one remarkable anniversary for the nation. It was one hundred years ago that women won the right to vote nationally in the United States with the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920. Women winning the right to vote was the result of many years of hard work by individuals as well as such organizations as the Arkansas Woman Suff rage Association.
For many years, there had been quiet calls for women to gain the vote and have rights guaranteed. Abigail Adams wrote a famous letter to her husband John Adams at the Continental Congress in 1776, imploring him to “remember the ladies” as Congress considered independence from Great Britain and weighed the defense of the liberties of men. Women actually received the right to vote first in New Jersey in 1776, but it was an oversight. The state’s new constitution shortly after independence gave the right to vote to any resident who owned property and did not specify men only. Some women met the property-owning requirement (which was not unusual in the years before universal suff rage) but saw their right to vote stripped away in 1806. Th e Seneca Falls Convention, held in Seneca Falls, New York, in 1848, called for all women to be given equal rights with men, but it took decades to overcome political obstacles and social conventions that kept women out of the election process. Women would not be able to vote anywhere in the nation until the Wyoming Territory gave women the right to vote in 1869.
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