This August, the United States celebrates a hundred years of women’s suffrage. The 19th Amendment was officially ratified in August 1920 and now, we women are using our voice in unique ways our ancestors never could have imagined. While we all know that the 19th Amendment didn’t fix everything (aka: this country still disenfranchised a lot of women of color), we can still celebrate the 19th Amendment and how far we’ve come as a country while reflecting on how far we can go in the future!

These nineteen books, podcast episodes, and movies will help teach out about the suffrage movement and inspire your own votes going forward.

BOOKS

Why They Marched by Susan Ware

Looking beyond the national leadership of the suffrage movement, an acclaimed historian gives voice to the thousands of women from different backgrounds, races, and religions whose local passion and protest resounded throughout the land.

The Woman’s Hour by Elaine Weiss

 Following a handful of remarkable women who led their respective forces into battle, The Woman’s Hour is the gripping story of how America’s women won their own freedom, and the opening campaign in the great twentieth-century battles for civil rights.

Roses and Radicals by Susan Zimet

The story of women’s suffrage is epic, frustrating, and as complex as the women who fought for it. Illustrated with portraits, period cartoons, and other images, Roses and Radicals celebrates this captivating yet overlooked piece of American history and the women who made it happen.

Suffragists in Washington DC by Rebecca Boggs Roberts

Groups of women protested and picketed outside the White House, and some were thrown into jail. Newspapers across the nation covered their activities. These tactics finally led to the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920. Author Rebecca Boggs Roberts narrates the heroic struggle of Alice Paul and the National Woman’s Party as they worked to earn the vote.

Mr. President, How Long Must We Wait? By Tina Cassidy

Mr. President, How Long Must We Wait? weaves together two storylines: the trajectories of Alice Paul and Woodrow Wilson, two apparent opposites. Paul’s procession of suffragists resulted in her being granted a face-to-face meeting with President Wilson, one that would lead to many meetings and much discussion, but little progress for women.

Votes for Women! By Winifred Conkling

For nearly 150 years, American women did not have the right to vote. On August 18, 1920, they won that right, when the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified at last. To achieve that victory, some of the fiercest, most passionate women in history marched, protested, and sometimes even broke the law—for more than eight decades.

History Smashers: Women’s Right to Vote by Kate Messner

Did you know that when women’s rights activists picketed President Wilson to get his support for voting rights, some men beat them up, tore down their banners, and stole from them? And then it was the women who got arrested! No joke. Through illustrations, graphic panels, photographs, sidebars, and more, acclaimed author Kate Messner smashes history by exploring the little-known details behind the fight for women’s suffrage.

PODCASTS

Stuff You Missed in History Class: Sophia Duleep Singh, Suffragette Princess

Sophia Duleep Singh’s education was focused on turning her into a proper lady, in line with her status as a princess. But she also became deeply involved in the Women’s Social and Political Union, a radical arm of the women’s suffrage movement in Britain.

Stuff You Missed in History Class: Suffragists’ Night of Terror at the Occoquan Workhouse

In November 1917, guards at the Occoquan Workhouse assaulted and terrorized 33 women from the National Woman’s Party. They were serving sentences for charges like “obstructing sidewalk traffic” after peacefully protesting in front of the White House.

 Dressed: Styling the American Suffragist, an Interview

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment. In gratitude to the American women who fought for the right to vote, we speak to Raissa Bretaña about the relationship between fashion and the 20th century suffrage movement.

For Real: Suffragists, Suffragettes, and Winning the Vote!

This week, Kim and Alice take a deep dive into books about the campaign for women’s suffrage and the passage of the 19th Amendment in August 1920.

Encyclopedia Wommanica: Feminists: Susan B Anthony

Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906) advocated tirelessly and radically for the rights of women. Her attempt to vote ended with her arrest, and paved the way for the 19th Amendment. She was also an abolitionist, a supporter of temperance and labor rights, and an education activist.

Shaping History: Reform and Revolution: A Reflection on the Portrait Monument and the Women’s Suffrage Movement

Shaping History: Women in Capitol Art brings together a rich soundtrack featuring curators, historians, artists, descendants of honored subjects, and eyewitnesses, providing insight that will enhance every visitor’s Capitol experience. 

Civics 101:19th Amendment

The prominent figures and events of the women’s suffrage movement of the 19th and 20th centuries can feel almost mythical at times. That’s in part because they are, in fact, myths. The telling of the Nineteenth Amendment tends to stretch from a convention in Seneca Falls, New York in 1848 to the amendment’s ratification in 1920, but the true story is a much longer one

MOVIES

 Iron Jawed Angels

Oscar-winner Hilary Swank stars in a fresh and contemporary look at a pivotal event in American history, telling the true story of how a pair of defiant and brilliant young activists took the women’s suffrage movement by storm, putting their lives at risk to help American women win the right to vote.

Suffragettes

Academy Award nominees Carey Mulligan and Helena Bonham Carter, and three-time Academy Award winner Meryl Streep star in this powerful drama, inspired by true events, about the women willing to lose everything in their fight for equality in early-20th-century Britain. Galvanized by outlaw fugitive Emmeline (Meryl Streep), Maud (Carey Mulligan) joins the U.K.’s growing Suffragette movement alongside women from all walks of life who sacrificed their jobs, homes, children –and even their lives for the right to vote.

Not for Ourselves Alone

Two women, one allegiance. Together Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony fought for women everywhere, and their strong willpower and sheer determination still ripple through contemporary society. Ken Burns’s Emmy® Award-winning documentary recounts the trials, tribulations, and triumphs of two pioneers striving to give birth to the women’s movement. Not until after their deaths was their shared vision of women’s suffrage realized.

One Woman, One Vote

How could America call itself the world’s greatest democracy, but continue to deny the right to vote to more than half of its citizens? This program documents the struggle which culminated in the passing of the 19th Amendment in the U.S. Senate by one vote. Witness the 70-year struggle for women’s suffrage. Discover why the crusaders faced entrenched opposition from men and women who feared the women’s vote would ignite a social revolution.

 The Divine Order

The Divine Order is set in Switzerland in 1971 where, despite the worldwide social upheavals of the previous decade, women were still denied the right to vote. When unassuming and dutiful housewife Nora (Marie Leuenberger, winner of a Best Actress award at Tribeca) is forbidden by her husband to take a part-time job, her frustration leads to her becoming the poster child of her town s suffragette movement. Her newfound celebrity brings humiliation, threats, and the potential end to her marriage, but, refusing to back down, she convinces the women in her.

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Aryssa D
FFL Cabinet Member