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Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote

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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. For far too long, the history of how American women won the right to vote has been told as the tale of a few iconic leaders, all white and 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. For far too long, the history of how American women won the right to vote has been told as the tale of a few iconic leaders, all white and native-born. But Susan Ware uncovered a much broader and more diverse story waiting to be told. Why They Marched is a tribute to the many women who worked tirelessly in communities across the nation, out of the spotlight, protesting, petitioning, and insisting on their right to full citizenship. Ware tells her story through the lives of nineteen activists, most of whom have long been overlooked. We meet Mary Church Terrell, a multilingual African American woman; Rose Schneiderman, a labor activist building coalitions on New York’s Lower East Side; Claiborne Catlin, who toured the Massachusetts countryside on horseback to drum up support for the cause; Mary Johnston, an aristocratic novelist bucking the Southern ruling elite; Emmeline W. Wells, a Mormon woman in a polygamous marriage determined to make her voice heard; and others who helped harness a groundswell of popular support. We also see the many places where the suffrage movement unfolded—in church parlors, meeting rooms, and the halls of Congress, but also on college campuses and even at the top of Mount Rainier. Few corners of the United States were untouched by suffrage activism. Ware’s deeply moving stories provide a fresh account of one of the most significant moments of political mobilization in American history. The dramatic, often joyous experiences of these women resonate powerfully today, as a new generation of young women demands to be heard.


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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. For far too long, the history of how American women won the right to vote has been told as the tale of a few iconic leaders, all white and 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. For far too long, the history of how American women won the right to vote has been told as the tale of a few iconic leaders, all white and native-born. But Susan Ware uncovered a much broader and more diverse story waiting to be told. Why They Marched is a tribute to the many women who worked tirelessly in communities across the nation, out of the spotlight, protesting, petitioning, and insisting on their right to full citizenship. Ware tells her story through the lives of nineteen activists, most of whom have long been overlooked. We meet Mary Church Terrell, a multilingual African American woman; Rose Schneiderman, a labor activist building coalitions on New York’s Lower East Side; Claiborne Catlin, who toured the Massachusetts countryside on horseback to drum up support for the cause; Mary Johnston, an aristocratic novelist bucking the Southern ruling elite; Emmeline W. Wells, a Mormon woman in a polygamous marriage determined to make her voice heard; and others who helped harness a groundswell of popular support. We also see the many places where the suffrage movement unfolded—in church parlors, meeting rooms, and the halls of Congress, but also on college campuses and even at the top of Mount Rainier. Few corners of the United States were untouched by suffrage activism. Ware’s deeply moving stories provide a fresh account of one of the most significant moments of political mobilization in American history. The dramatic, often joyous experiences of these women resonate powerfully today, as a new generation of young women demands to be heard.

30 review for Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote

  1. 5 out of 5

    Woman Reading

    3.5 ☆ American women fought for their right to vote over a bumpy course that stretched approximately 70 years. A battle that took that much time obviously involved many leaders and supporters, and yet most people (including me) can only recall a few iconic names. Leading the pack is Susan B. Anthony, whose suffrage efforts landed her visage on the one dollar coin in 1979 and made her the first woman to be commemorated by the US Mint. Historian Susan Ware wrote Why They Marched: Untold Stories of 3.5 ☆ American women fought for their right to vote over a bumpy course that stretched approximately 70 years. A battle that took that much time obviously involved many leaders and supporters, and yet most people (including me) can only recall a few iconic names. Leading the pack is Susan B. Anthony, whose suffrage efforts landed her visage on the one dollar coin in 1979 and made her the first woman to be commemorated by the US Mint. Historian Susan Ware wrote Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote in order to spotlight additional voices. White women of a certain socioeconomic class had risen in prominence because they didn't have to work for a living. They could thus volunteer their time to the cause. While Ware's chapters were loosely organized in overlapping chronological order, this was not a comprehensive history of the (white women's) fight to get the vote. Indeed, the biggest drawback of this book was the author's presumption of the reader's prior knowledge of the suffrage movement in the US. Ware hadn't even included a master timeline of key events. By virtue of declaring their support for suffrage in the first place, suffragists took themselves outside the bounds of what was considered acceptable behavior for women at the time. The woman suffrage campaign provided a place where it was okay to be different, okay to be an outlier in regard to accepted gender norms and in other ways too. The suffrage movement gave women a space to combine meaningful work with satisfying personal relationships, including a broad range of alternative lifestyles. The strength of this book was its acknowledgement and occasional analysis of women who had been marginalized in the historical account -- primarily African Americans, Jews, working class women, and those outside of the east coast firmament. African American women were involved in the campaign from an early date, but many leaders in the national organizations wanted to exclude or at least to segregate them. Ware included chapters on Sojourner Truth, Ida Wells-Barnett, and Mary Church Terrell. "You may talk about permanent peace until doomsday," [Mary Church Terrell] told the delegates [at the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom conference] assembled in Zurich in 1919, "but the world will never have it until the dark races are given a square deal." And that had to include women, a point too often lost on the white suffrage movement... The chapter on "the fighting Nathan sisters" was a good display of Ware's analysis as the two Jewish siblings took opposite and highly public stances on the issue of women enfranchisement. In contrast was another Jewish woman with a public role, only Rose had emerged from the working class after successfully organizing the garment workers' strike in New York City. Like African American suffragists, Rose Schneiderman anticipated the modern intersectional approach which posits that oppressions cannot be singled out or ranked, because they operate in tandem with each other. I read this with the Read Women group. Here's the discussion thread -- https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/.... We shared links for a master timeline of the suffragettes' campaign and a visual of individual states' progression toward full enfranchisement. Overall, I found Ware's book to be interesting but not fascinating, primarily due to the author's expectation I pointed out earlier. And I was disappointed that there had not been more analysis of events and issues in what was primarily a collection of mini-biographies. If otherwise, I would have rounded up my 3.5 star rating.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    The first twelve chapters are well worth reading; the last seven - comprising part iii, “winning strategies,” is more dry than dust and lacks any evidence of story-telling capability — almost as if a different person authored parts i and ii than authored part iii. Check this one out of your library and feel no guilt about abandoning it at page 177.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Susanna Sturgis

    From the title I expected stories about the rank-and-file supporters of women's suffrage, the "ordinary" activists who did the work behind the scenes and under the radar. This book isn't quite that (though I'd welcome such a thing if/when it appears). Most of these women were not at all "behind the scenes and under the radar" in their own time. A couple, like Susan B. Anthony and Sojourner Truth, are well known, even iconic, today, though as with most icons we don't know as much about them as we From the title I expected stories about the rank-and-file supporters of women's suffrage, the "ordinary" activists who did the work behind the scenes and under the radar. This book isn't quite that (though I'd welcome such a thing if/when it appears). Most of these women were not at all "behind the scenes and under the radar" in their own time. A couple, like Susan B. Anthony and Sojourner Truth, are well known, even iconic, today, though as with most icons we don't know as much about them as we think we do. Other names are familiar to anyone who's done some reading in women's history: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Alice Stone Blackwell, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Rose Schneiderman, Mary Church Terrell, Alice Paul, Carrie Chapman Catt. But most of the women featured here were public figures in their day, organizers who did a lot more than march. What Why They Marched does wonderfully and importantly is focus on various aspects of the suffrage movement that are often ignored or slighted. Did you realize that Mormon women were a strong voice for suffrage? I sure didn't. I did know that Utah was among the first states to give women the right to vote -- women could vote in Utah as soon as it became a territory in 1870 -- and that Utah was overwhelmingly Mormon, but I didn't make the connection. When the suffrage movement is taken out of its historical context, one thing that often gets lost is what author Susan Ware calls "the shadow of the Confederacy." This is the title of chapter 6, but the shadow suffuses several other chapters as well. The racism of many white suffragists has been well documented, but less attention has been paid to systemic white supremacy and how deeply it affected political realities on the ground. This comes to the fore in Ware's last chapter, about the fight to get the Tennessee legislature to ratify what became the 19th Amendment. (Elaine Weiss's The Woman's Hour is entirely devoted to this and highly recommended. It's a page-turner even when you know how it comes out.) Sue Shelton White, Tennessee native, working woman, and organizer for the National Woman's Party, played a key role here. She's near the top of my list of suffragists who should be much better known today. Ida Wells-Barnett is best known for her heroic work to expose the prevalence of lynching; she was also an active suffragist and community organizer in Chicago. Since the white organizers for women's suffrage marginalized or outright ignored black women, Wells-Barnett founded the Alpha Suffrage Club to mobilize black women not only for suffrage but for political participation on a wider scale. When the white organizers of the great 1913 suffrage march on Washington, timed to coincide with the inauguration of President Woodrow Wilson, relegated women of color to the back of the march, Wells-Barnett first argued against the policy – and then took action: she waited on the curb till the front of the procession passed by, then she stepped off and joined the leaders. Mary Church Terrell is known for her activism on behalf of civil rights and women's suffrage, but I didn't know that she spoke four languages – and that she addressed a 1904 meeting in Berlin of the International Council of Women in German. The more I read about the suffrage movement, the more struck I am by the suffragists' organizing ingenuity and persistence over at least seven decades (and longer once you realize that Seneca Falls didn't come out of nowhere). They pioneered some strategies that we've long taken for granted. Ware's chapter 18, "Maud Wood Park and the Front Door Lobby," was an eye-opener for me. I don't know about you, but I'd never heard of Maud Wood Park. She organized the several-year lobbying effort that persuaded both houses of Congress to pass the suffrage bill and in the process practically invented the kind of lobbying that happens out in the open, not in smoke-filled backrooms. This was, as Ware notes, "difficult and often tedious work. It lacked the glamour of marching in a suffrage parade, addressing an open-air meeting, or picketing the White House, but it was absolutely crucial to the long suffrage campaign's success." Amen. What I love most about Why They Marched is how much it says about why we march, and how we got to where we are. I might suggest that you come to it after brushing up a bit on suffrage history, but even if you don't, you'll get a lot out of this book – and you'll probably want to read more.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Casey Cep

    Reviewed this book and two others in an article for "The New Yorker" on women's suffrage. Here's the link: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/20... Reviewed this book and two others in an article for "The New Yorker" on women's suffrage. Here's the link: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/20...

  5. 5 out of 5

    Cassidy Steinke

    It has been 100 years this year since the US government passed the 19th Ammendment which gave all women in the United States the right to vote. It boggles my mind because 100 years is actually not that long ago. I found this book so interesting and liked that Ware focused on suffragists that weren't widely covered in my education. The fight these women fought was not easy and there were so many different suffragist movements that often did not like each other. I really feel like I learned a lot It has been 100 years this year since the US government passed the 19th Ammendment which gave all women in the United States the right to vote. It boggles my mind because 100 years is actually not that long ago. I found this book so interesting and liked that Ware focused on suffragists that weren't widely covered in my education. The fight these women fought was not easy and there were so many different suffragist movements that often did not like each other. I really feel like I learned a lot from this book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    Not just Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, this book includes many other names and situations than those that came from the Seneca Falls Convention. Not everyone fighting for women's right to vote wanted the same outcome. Factions included a group who wished to exclude "coloreds" and immigrants. Some areas of the country (Utah) moved faster than others at accepting female voters. I loved Susan B. Anthony's quote when she first tried to get to vote, "I didn't present myself as a woman. Not just Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, this book includes many other names and situations than those that came from the Seneca Falls Convention. Not everyone fighting for women's right to vote wanted the same outcome. Factions included a group who wished to exclude "coloreds" and immigrants. Some areas of the country (Utah) moved faster than others at accepting female voters. I loved Susan B. Anthony's quote when she first tried to get to vote, "I didn't present myself as a woman. I presented myself as a citizen."

  7. 5 out of 5

    Holly Brandi

    "I speak as loudly as I can....I even speak louder than I can" - Susan B. Anthony This felt like important reading for the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment and a divisive election cycle. I'm inspired by these women's stories and their courage. "I speak as loudly as I can....I even speak louder than I can" - Susan B. Anthony This felt like important reading for the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment and a divisive election cycle. I'm inspired by these women's stories and their courage.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Michaela

    Not easy to read, especially when you´re not very familiar with US history and the suffrage there.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Diana

    I liked how each chapter was its own story but linked to the broader theme of the suffrage movement. I also appreciated learning about some of the "foot-soldiers" of a movement that mobilized literally millions. We all know Susan B. Anthony but I loved reading about some of the lesser known suffragists. I liked how each chapter was its own story but linked to the broader theme of the suffrage movement. I also appreciated learning about some of the "foot-soldiers" of a movement that mobilized literally millions. We all know Susan B. Anthony but I loved reading about some of the lesser known suffragists.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Joe

    "Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote" does precisely what it advertises. Susan Ware focuses primarily on the women who have previously been left on the margins of this history (or left out all together). Women who appeared in parades, women who broke the racial barrier to support her fellow women, mountain climbers, business women, etc. You name it, it's here. Anyone looking for a book focusing on Susan B. Anthony, look elsewhere. She's mentioned, of cou "Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote" does precisely what it advertises. Susan Ware focuses primarily on the women who have previously been left on the margins of this history (or left out all together). Women who appeared in parades, women who broke the racial barrier to support her fellow women, mountain climbers, business women, etc. You name it, it's here. Anyone looking for a book focusing on Susan B. Anthony, look elsewhere. She's mentioned, of course, but this book is for the unsung heroes. It's a fascinating look inside the suffrage movement itself, infighting and all. "Why can't all of these women agree?" Ware correctly points out that all men agree on precious little. The hard work and compromise that these women did over generations to get this done is beyond impressive. It's humbling. Ware also shows the splintering of the factions and causes that happened after women were enfranchised but that's kind of the point. Women weren't asking to vote because they had some joint, grand plan they wanted to work out together. They wanted to vote because they were millions of individuals without a voice and the ability to vote is the bare minimum a citizen needs before their story of freedom can begin. Ware does a great job of showing these extremely difficult first steps.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Emma

    Although there were times when ‘Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote’ assumed more background knowledge than a book aimed at a lay audience should assume, the majority of Susan Ware’s well-researched dive into suffrage in the United States was illuminating and easy to follow. She focused on lesser known figures who nevertheless played key roles in the arduous battle to pass the Nineteenth Amendment, writing frankly about the racism and classism that infe Although there were times when ‘Why They Marched: Untold Stories of the Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote’ assumed more background knowledge than a book aimed at a lay audience should assume, the majority of Susan Ware’s well-researched dive into suffrage in the United States was illuminating and easy to follow. She focused on lesser known figures who nevertheless played key roles in the arduous battle to pass the Nineteenth Amendment, writing frankly about the racism and classism that infested the movement and about the numerous divisions and factions within the suffragette community. The reality of suffrage was a lot messier (and a lot more interesting) than I had been expecting, and I enjoyed learning about the complex relationships between the different players. The chapter on the role that Mormon women played in the fight for the vote was particularly fascinating, followed closely by the chapter on Rose Schneiderman, the working class suffragette and trade unionist who coined the political slogan “bread and roses”. In fact, there was only one chapter that I didn’t enjoy. Unfortunately, I disliked it so much that it significantly reduced my enjoyment of the book as a whole. The farmer suffragettes, Molly Dewson and Polly Porter, were every bit as remarkable as the other colourful characters in the book, but the way that they were discussed left a bad taste in my mouth. Reclaiming a slur is complicated and personal, and many members of the gay and lesbian community, myself included, are still uncomfortable using queer to describe ourselves. The author used this slur as a general term to describe behaviour considered strange or outside societal norms, from husbands supporting their wives when they became involved in suffrage to close female friendships and platonic cohabitation. Straight academics have no right to use queer to mark us as outside society and perpetuate the harmful belief that gay men and lesbians are somehow other. We just want to live and love in peace, and there is nothing strange about that in any time period.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie

    Great book about the history of the Women’s Suffrage movement but importantly recognizes the many women and men behind the scenes. The only reason I didn’t give it 5 stars is because there are so very many names of suffragists throughout the book that it is hard to keep track of them all. I found it best to read one chapter and digest it and then read another later to keep all the names straight. Great book and I learned so much about the movement both here and in other parts of the world that I Great book about the history of the Women’s Suffrage movement but importantly recognizes the many women and men behind the scenes. The only reason I didn’t give it 5 stars is because there are so very many names of suffragists throughout the book that it is hard to keep track of them all. I found it best to read one chapter and digest it and then read another later to keep all the names straight. Great book and I learned so much about the movement both here and in other parts of the world that I did not know!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tina Panik

    An outstanding, simultaneous perspective on the suffrage movement, as told through people, places, and objects of influence. Each of these 19 chapters (mirroring the 19th Amendment) presents a well-researched piece of this landmark history.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    Why They Marched is enjoyable if you like to read textbooks. Susan Ware’s book reminded me of a high school United States History class reading because of its deep historical accounts and bland delivery. Although Why They Marched Never captured my attention aside from a segment on horses and a chapter about international public speaking, the research and time invested to write the book was clearly evident. I appreciate Susan Ware’s focus on the biographies of key suffragists to put a name and st Why They Marched is enjoyable if you like to read textbooks. Susan Ware’s book reminded me of a high school United States History class reading because of its deep historical accounts and bland delivery. Although Why They Marched Never captured my attention aside from a segment on horses and a chapter about international public speaking, the research and time invested to write the book was clearly evident. I appreciate Susan Ware’s focus on the biographies of key suffragists to put a name and story to a greater moment in history. Additionally, I commend Ware for including important gaps in the suffrage movement like the rights of and attention towards black women as well as the work left to be done with improving women’s rights today.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Megan Bevers

    I enjoyed reading this. Very informative and highlighted many suffragists whom I had never heard of. Due to my own ignorance, I didn't realize just how much race was intertwined with women's suffrage and how racist even some of the white suffragists were. For instance, black women were supposed to be in back of parades. I enjoyed hearing the stories of how black women fought against this. I do not take it lightly reading this book in our current political climate. I will be thinking of these wome I enjoyed reading this. Very informative and highlighted many suffragists whom I had never heard of. Due to my own ignorance, I didn't realize just how much race was intertwined with women's suffrage and how racist even some of the white suffragists were. For instance, black women were supposed to be in back of parades. I enjoyed hearing the stories of how black women fought against this. I do not take it lightly reading this book in our current political climate. I will be thinking of these women and their sacrifices as I #vote2020. As the book concludes, "Feminism will always be necessary."

  16. 5 out of 5

    Tiffany

    I am embarrassed to say that my understanding of the women's suffrage movement at the turn of the century was very, very limited. I could blame public education, but I've been responsible for my own education for 20 years. I'm glad I found this book as I now have a better understanding and appreciation of what women and men did to give women the right to vote. I'm also incredibly impressed with Sojourner Truth. I am embarrassed to say that my understanding of the women's suffrage movement at the turn of the century was very, very limited. I could blame public education, but I've been responsible for my own education for 20 years. I'm glad I found this book as I now have a better understanding and appreciation of what women and men did to give women the right to vote. I'm also incredibly impressed with Sojourner Truth.

  17. 4 out of 5

    June Baer

    I really enjoyed the fact that this book focused on some of the lesser known women. It wasn't all about the big names that lead the suffragette movement. It was fascinating to read the stories of the women who fought for the right to vote. I also like that the author did not shrink away from mentioning that some of the leaders of the movement for the vote for women were racist and elitist. There were times I would have like a lot more information and stories on the women featured in the book. Th I really enjoyed the fact that this book focused on some of the lesser known women. It wasn't all about the big names that lead the suffragette movement. It was fascinating to read the stories of the women who fought for the right to vote. I also like that the author did not shrink away from mentioning that some of the leaders of the movement for the vote for women were racist and elitist. There were times I would have like a lot more information and stories on the women featured in the book. Then I would also think that if the author did go into the detail I wanted, the book would have been huge and I likely would not have picked it up to read. Instead I had an enjoyable read and now have a lot of name of individuals that I have to research.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Denise

    The 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment granting women in the US the right to vote sparked a slew of new releases on the subject. Ware chronicles the long decades of the American suffrage movement through a series of portraits of some of its many contributors - some more, some less well known today. An interesting and informative read.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Angela

    This is an entertaining and informative look at women who worked for suffrage. Ware includes some very famous stories but much of the book is focused on more obscure women and their activities. I particularly enjoyed the chapters on the Nathan sisters who were on opposite sides of the issue, cartoonist Nina Allende, and White House picketer Hazel Hunkins. Ware also brings the stories alive with photos and descriptions of objects from the time. I highly recommend this book!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Devany

    There is so much I didn’t know about the suffrage movement and the women involved in it. It was not something I was taught in school at any length. I am not generally a fan of non-fiction historical type books as I find them dry like this one was at times. But I did still enjoy it and the stories told. Ready to cast my vote in November and be heard- can’t let all that these women fought for go to waste!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

    I didn't like the way this book was organized. I would have preferred a chronological order to the series of brief vignettes/biographies. I didn't like the way this book was organized. I would have preferred a chronological order to the series of brief vignettes/biographies.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jenn Arndt

    This probably isn't the best starting point for someone without much basic knowledge of the American suffragist movement, but the format of mini biographies of some major and some minor suffragists was well-written and engaging. This probably isn't the best starting point for someone without much basic knowledge of the American suffragist movement, but the format of mini biographies of some major and some minor suffragists was well-written and engaging.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lyndee Pfaffenbach

    The layout of the book put it in different perspectives and led you to connecting with different people. I have grown as a feminist listening to this book.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

    Fantastic resource about women's suffrage that covers some very well known figures and many lesser known. I liked the division of the book and how it was centered around an artefact; however, some of the chapters covered information in ways I hadn't expected. This is a super valuable resource with so many people, stories, quotes, and references. Many chapters were enthralling, but at times it was a bit dry, and I occasionally had trouble keeping people straight (perhaps my problem, not hers, but Fantastic resource about women's suffrage that covers some very well known figures and many lesser known. I liked the division of the book and how it was centered around an artefact; however, some of the chapters covered information in ways I hadn't expected. This is a super valuable resource with so many people, stories, quotes, and references. Many chapters were enthralling, but at times it was a bit dry, and I occasionally had trouble keeping people straight (perhaps my problem, not hers, but perhaps a visual key could have been useful). I would like to see more of Susan Ware's research.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Cindi

    Quite interesting and I appreciate the effort the author took to detail those that may be forgotten. I recommended it to one of my bookclubs - i look forward to that discussion.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Alyssa

    I really liked her conclusion how she placed the passage of the 19th amendment into just one moment in a continuum of women's political activism - I thought that perspective was really interesting. I also found it really fascinating to read the profiles of these lesser-known activists (OK, well some weren't really lesser known but in general there weren't the most recognizable names). It got me to consider more deeply the true machinations of political movements and all the work that goes into m I really liked her conclusion how she placed the passage of the 19th amendment into just one moment in a continuum of women's political activism - I thought that perspective was really interesting. I also found it really fascinating to read the profiles of these lesser-known activists (OK, well some weren't really lesser known but in general there weren't the most recognizable names). It got me to consider more deeply the true machinations of political movements and all the work that goes into making political change. In a way, it gave me a new perspective on modern-day activism; namely, the fact that while there's always leaders whose names everybody knows, there's also a huge population of "everyday" people who do the ground work and behind the scenes activities that are equally important in making change.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kathy D

    I picked this book up at The Women's History Center in Denver a few weeks ago. It is incredible within this book to realize how many women are NOT recognized for their contributions to the suffrage movement. This movement's not so proud moments are in regards to the refusal to be inclusive of all women, regardless of color, and the author does not minimize this and even mentions the fallout and additional hurdles this caused. It is well worth a read to find out more of this movement and how it i I picked this book up at The Women's History Center in Denver a few weeks ago. It is incredible within this book to realize how many women are NOT recognized for their contributions to the suffrage movement. This movement's not so proud moments are in regards to the refusal to be inclusive of all women, regardless of color, and the author does not minimize this and even mentions the fallout and additional hurdles this caused. It is well worth a read to find out more of this movement and how it is critical for us to continue the work.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Natalie

    I loved this book! Not only did it make me feel like I was in college again (in a good, intellectual way) I also feel inspired to be more involved civically because the examples of the 19 women in this book show me the women can be involved in a myriad of ways. My favorite chapters were about Emmeline B. Wells and the story of Mormon suffrage (holla at my people) and the story of the Maud sisters. One of the things I loved about this book was the variety of experiences that women had fighting fo I loved this book! Not only did it make me feel like I was in college again (in a good, intellectual way) I also feel inspired to be more involved civically because the examples of the 19 women in this book show me the women can be involved in a myriad of ways. My favorite chapters were about Emmeline B. Wells and the story of Mormon suffrage (holla at my people) and the story of the Maud sisters. One of the things I loved about this book was the variety of experiences that women had fighting for and against suffrage.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    A great overview from 1848 to 1920, noting, in brief the well-known women's activism, and then turning in detail to describe some of the lesser known suffragists and what they accomplished. Some of my favorites-- Emmeline Wells, an early Mormon in Utah (which enfranchised women in 1896!); Claiborne Catlin, who rode horseback around Massachusetts speaking for suffrage; and Nina Allender, a cartoonist for the cause. Also ends with an inspiring reminder that feminist work is ongoing. [Don't think I A great overview from 1848 to 1920, noting, in brief the well-known women's activism, and then turning in detail to describe some of the lesser known suffragists and what they accomplished. Some of my favorites-- Emmeline Wells, an early Mormon in Utah (which enfranchised women in 1896!); Claiborne Catlin, who rode horseback around Massachusetts speaking for suffrage; and Nina Allender, a cartoonist for the cause. Also ends with an inspiring reminder that feminist work is ongoing. [Don't think I need that reminder on election day-after 2020!]

  30. 4 out of 5

    Rachel

    (Just FYI - With the suffrage centennial in 2020, this definitely won't be the last book I read on this topic.) This brilliant book tells some of the lesser-known stories of the women's suffrage movement, and each one is riveting and important, and I have some new role models. What an awesome way to get these women's (and a couple of mens') stories out there - stories that need to be told, especially as we're commemorating the centennial. (Just FYI - With the suffrage centennial in 2020, this definitely won't be the last book I read on this topic.) This brilliant book tells some of the lesser-known stories of the women's suffrage movement, and each one is riveting and important, and I have some new role models. What an awesome way to get these women's (and a couple of mens') stories out there - stories that need to be told, especially as we're commemorating the centennial.

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