One hundred years ago, Nebraska was one of the first states to ratify the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote in the United States. Beginning August 16th, the Nebraska History Museum invites you to celebrate women’s suffrage with their newest exhibit, Votes For Women: Nebraska’s Suffrage Story. The exhibition will be open on August 16, 2019, through January 2, 2021.
The exhibit will feature artifacts, photographs, and more from Nebraska’s suffrage movement as well as commentary from present-day women in politics and advocacy. Visitors will see unique objects including the Nebraska pen used by Governor Roy McKelvie to sign the bill ratifying the 19th Amendment and an autograph book signed by Nebraska and nationally known suffragists including Susan B. Anthony, Lucy Stone, and Clara Colby. The exhibit also features many original banners, flags, and pennants used in Nebraska suffrage parades.
Celebrate the opening of Votes for Women
Friday, August 16th, 5:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Join us at the Nebraska History Museum, 1500 R Street in Lincoln, to celebrate the opening of Vote for Women: Nebraska’s Suffrage Story. Be one of the first people to see the exhibit and experience Nebraska’s suffrage movement first hand.
Guests will see authentic banners, posters, clothing from this crucial civil rights struggle, learn about the women (and men) who worked for decades to win Nebraska’s battle for the ballot, experience the passion and power of historic re-enactors depicting suffragists Clara Bewick Colby, Susan B. Anthony and Rheta Childe Orr, and much more!
The free event will be Friday, August 16th, from 5:00 pm to 7:30 pm. We look forward to seeing you there!
In a very special Dine & Discuss event, we will be hosting a kickoff to our celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment and the League of Women Voters. The event will be at 5:30 p.m. on Monday August 26 at the AIM building, 1905 Harney St., on the 7th floor. (August 26 is also Women’s Equality Day!)
We hope you can join us for a presentation on the 19th Amendment by Judge Laurie Smith Camp, Senior District Judge of the United States District Court, District of Nebraska.
There is no cost to attend and heavy appetizers will be provided.
Dr. Amy Forss, chair of the History Department and Social Science co-representative at Metropolitan Community College in Omaha, will unpack Grace Crandall Richardson’s personal scrapbooks to offer insights into the life of one of Nebraska’s fighting suffragists.
Images and personal memories outline Richardson’s campaign and her role in the 1917-1919 Nebraska Supreme Court case Barkley vs. Pool. Included in the presentation are photographs and artifacts from the History Nebraska collection and excerpts from the unpublished autobiography.
The Library of Congress is asking for volunteers to help transcribe more than 16,000 historic papers related to the women’s suffrage movement. It has launched a crowdsourcing platform, “By the People,” to ask the public to help type up written documents word for word, which will make it easier to find and read original sources.
The Library of Congress project coincides with the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which Congress passed in June 1919. Women officially gained the right to vote in August 1920, when the amendment was ratified.
The Library of Congress’s collection includes letters, speeches, newspaper articles, personal diaries and other materials from famed suffragists like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton; accounts from Carrie Chapman Catt, who served twice as president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, including during the final successful ratification campaign; and the diaries of Mary Church Terrell, a founder of the National Association of Colored Women, which shed light on minorities’ laborious suffrage struggles and her own dealings with civil rights figures like W.E.B. Du Bois.
Elizabeth Novara, an American women’s history specialist and curator of the Library of Congress’s new “Shall Not Be Denied” suffrage exhibition, said she hopes the transcription endeavor will give people an opportunity to “engage with our collections and feel a connection with the suffragists.”
“This project may be of interest to members of the League of Women Voters as we begin to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution,” said Dianne Bystrom, LWVNE co-president. “This would also be a great project for college classes to help them learn more about the women’s suffrage movement.”
As of now, more than 4,200 documents have already been transcribed. However, thousands more need transcription. You can donate your time and typing skills to the project here.
In honor of Black History Month, LWVGO board member Krystal Fox talks with Terri Crawford, Adjunct Professor of Black Studies at the University of Nebraska at Omaha, about the history of black women in politics.
Go Vote Omaha! is our locally produced informational television program. Watch Go Vote Omaha at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday nights on Cox channel 22 or CenturyLink channel 89 or anytime on YouTube. You can also listen to these episodes as podcasts on Podbean.
Members of the League of Women Voters of Nebraska will be acknowledged on Thursday, Feb. 14, by Senator Lynne Walz and members of the legislature in conjunction with a resolution recognizing August 2019 as Nebraska Woman’s Suffrage Month. Walz introduced the legislative resolution with 44 other members of the Nebraska legislature on Feb. 8. It was read into the record on Feb. 11.
The recognition kicks off a celebration from August 2019 through August 2020 by the LWVNE of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment granting women in the United States the right to vote. In the final campaign for women’s suffrage, Nebraska was the 14th state to ratify the 19th Amendment on August 2, 1919. Over the next year, other states followed with Tennessee becoming the 36th needed and final state to ratify the amendment on August 18, 1920. The 19th Amendment officially became part of the U.S. Constitution on August 26, 1920.
“The Nebraska League was organized in June 1920,” said Sherry Miller, president of the LWVNE, “and was fully ready to lead the way for women’s suffrage in Nebraska when it was ratified later that year. It has been leading the way in voter education and protection ever since.”
The ratification of the 19th Amendment was the hard-fought and successful culmination of a 72-year campaign by several generations of suffragists. Led by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott, women and men at the Seneca Falls, NY, convention in 1848 produced a Declaration of Sentiments that called for actions to equalize women’s status with men, including the right to vote.
Since winning the vote in 1920, more women than men have voted in every presidential election since 1964 and, since 1980, a greater proportion of women than men has voted in presidential elections. In 2019 more women serve in the U.S. Congress and state legislatures than ever before with 102 women in the House of Representatives, 25 in the Senate, and 2,117 in state legislatures. There are now more women senators in the Nebraska legislature than ever before. “This diversity in our Unicameral creates a more equitable conversation and better represents the makeup of our state,” Walz said.
The League of Women Voters of Nebraska with its local chapters in Omaha, Lincoln, Seward and Hastings plans a yearlong schedule of events, including participation in the 2020 Eighth Circuit Judicial Conference, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment.
Read the resolution below.
Join the League of Women Voters of Nebraska (LWVNE) and the League of Women Voters of Greater Omaha (LWVGO) at the Nebraska Legislature to be present when Senator Lynne Walz presents a resolution declaring August 2019 as Nebraska Woman’s Suffrage Month!
The resolution will be read at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Feb. 14 in the chamber. Members of the League of Women Voters of Nebraska will be recognized as part of the reading.
This is the kickoff to the Centennial Celebration of the 19th Amendment and the 100th Anniversary of the League of Women Voters.
Please meet us at 10:30 a.m. at the doors to the legislative chamber. We will walk up to the gallery to be recognized when Sen. Walz recognizes LWV members and marks the passing of the resolution presented.
RSVP using the form below, or, for more information, contact MaryLee Moulton at firstname.lastname@example.org.