Dangers of Women’s Voting Rights Protesting

February 19, 2014

1776 Abigail Adams writes to her husband, John Adams, asking him to “remember the ladies” in the new code of laws. Adams replies the men will fight the “despotism of the petticoat.”

In 1776 when Abigail Adams wrote to her husband asking for ‘remembrance of the ladies,’ that was the start of the protest of voting rights. For all about 250 years, woman have been fighting for anything from voting rights to the same pay at their job. Although, these protest come with a great deal of courage and bravery. According to Lafayette National Park Website, “Mobs started threatening the pickets and destroying their banners, while the police did nothing. In June 1917, police began arresting suffrage pickets for blocking traffic.  In July and August, there were more arrests.  The women served their jail sentences under harsh conditions in old, unsanitary buildings.  They were sometimes beaten.  Alice Paul and other leaders of the NWP went on hunger strikes and were brutally force-fed.  Bystanders and police attacked them and there were more arrests.  In August 1918, the women began to hold mass meetings in Lafayette Park.  In March, a federal appeals court had decided that the earlier arrests and detentions were unconstitutional, but the police still arrested more than 60 women and sent them to prison.7” This explains just a few of what the women protesters were put through when they were protesting. When they started going to volunteer to help out in the war or World War I, the protesting started to drift away and became less recognized. Although, there was a positive to all this protesting and danger. By 1919 the Suffrage Amendment was officially put into order and passed the President, US Senate, and US House.

1918 The jailed suffragists released from prison. Appellate court rules all the arrests were illegal. President Wilson declares support for suffrage. Suffrage Amendment passes US House with exactly a two-thirds vote but loses by two votes in the Senate.
1919 In January, the NWP lights and guards a “Watchfire for Freedom.” It is maintained until the Suffrage Amendment passes US Senate on June 4. The battle for ratification by at least 36 states begins

“Timeline of Women’s Suffrage in the United States.” Timeline of Women’s Suffrage in the United States. We Affirm Open Link, 1995. Web. 19 Feb. 2014.

© 1995, Brooks and Gonzalez. The Women’s History Project of Lexington Area National Organization for Women. This timeline may be distributed freely under the following conditions: that the use is not for profit; that it is distributed in complete, unchanged form; that this complete notice is intact and included in the distribution. Contact Margaret Lark Russell at: suffragehistory@gmail.com for additional information.

“Lafayette Park: First Amendment Rights on the President’s Doorstep–Reading 1.” Lafayette Park: First Amendment Rights on the President’s Doorstep–Reading 1. National Park Service, n.d. Web. 19 Feb. 2014.

Entry Filed under: Protesting. Posted in  Protesting .



3 Comments Add your own

  •    McCrary, Olivia  |  February 25th, 2014 at 2:18 pm     Reply

    I loved how you added this to your blog because I was wanting to research more and what did happen to women if they tried to protest. I never got to researching it but it was going to be the next thing I looked into! Thanks for adding it because now my questions have been answered!:)

  •    Van Bueren, Jennifer  |  February 26th, 2014 at 7:11 pm     Reply

    Yeah! I just felt like it was a big part of this project. I’m glad I could help!(:

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