2017 Women's Equality Day

History of Women's Equality Day

From the National Women's History Project website:

At the behest of Rep. Bella Abzug (D-NY), in 1971 the U.S. Congress designated August 26 as “Women’s Equality Day.” The date was selected to commemorate the 1920 certification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote. This was the culmination of a massive, peaceful civil rights movement by women that had its formal beginnings in 1848 at the world’s first women’s rights convention, in Seneca Falls, New York. The observance of Women’s Equality Day not only commemorates the passage of the 19th Amendment, but also calls attention to women’s continuing efforts toward full equality. Workplaces, libraries, organizations, and public facilities now participate with Women’s Equality Day programs, displays, video showings, or other activities.

Key Dates in Passage of the Nineteenth Amendment

  • July 1848 - Seneca Falls, NY, is the location for the first Women's Rights Convention. Elizabeth Cady Stanton writes "The Declaration of Sentiments" creating the agenda of women's activism for decades to come.
  • June 4, 1919 - Congress proposed the Nineteenth Amendment, which reads: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation."
  • June 10, 1919 - Wisconsin, Illinois, and Michigan ratified the Nineteenth Amendment in its adopted form
  • January 16, 1920 - Indiana ratifies the Nineteenth Amendment
  • Between June 1919 and August 1920 - The required number of states ratify the Nineteenth Amendment
  • August 18, 1920 - Tennessee becomes the 36th state needed to ratify the Nineteenth Amendment
  • August 26, 1920 - The Nineteenth Amendment is certified by Secretary of Sate Bainbridge Colby, granting women the right to vote in the United States.
  • Between September 1920 and March 1984 - The remaining twelve U.S. states ratify the Nineteenth Amendment (Note: Alaska and Hawaii were admitted to the United States after the Nineteenth Amendment had become law).
  • March 22, 1984 - Mississippi became the last state to ratify the Nineteenth Amendment

August 2017

 

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