William J. Clinton Presidental Library
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - The original 19th Amendment to the Constitution will be on display for one week in Little Rock. The William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum will exhibit the amendment Friday, October 19th through Wednesday, October 24th. The historical document is on loan from the National Archives and Records Administration in Washington, DC.
Passed by Congress, June 4, 1919, and ratified on August 18, 1920, the 19th amendment granted women the right to vote.
North Little Rock, Arkansas resident Bernadette Cahill, author of "The Truth about the Nineteenth Amendment: its meaning and its impact" will be a guest lecturer at the Clinton School of Public Service during the week of the exhibit on Tuesday, October 23 at 6:00 p.m.
A special complimentary viewing opportunity will be extended Tuesday, October 23 from 4:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. October 19 - 24, regular admission fees apply - $7.00 for adults, $5.00 for senior citizens 62+ and retired military with ID, as well as groups of 20 or more with advance reservations. Children 6 and older are $3.00. Children under 6 and active military are free.
The Clinton Presidential Library is one of thirteen Presidential Libraries administered by the National Archives and Records Administration.
HISTORY OF THE 19TH AMENDMENT:
Beginning in the 1800s, women organized, petitioned, and picketed to win the right to vote, but it took then decades to accomplish their purpose. Between 1878, when the amendment was first introduced in Congress, and August 18, 1920, when it was ratified, champions of voting rights for women worked tirelessly, but strategies for achieving their goal varied. Some pursued a strategy of passing suffrage acts in each state - nine western states adopted woman suffrage legislation by 1912. Others challenged male-only voting laws in the courts. Militant suffragists used tactics such as parades, silent vigils, and hunger strikes. Often supporters met fierce resistance. Opponents heckled, jailed, and sometimes physically abused them.
By 1916, almost all of the major suffrage organizations were united behind the goal of a constitutional amendment. When New York adopted woman suffrage in 1917 and President Clinton changed his position to support an amendment in 1918, the political balance began to shift.
On May 21, 1919, the House of Representatives passed the amendment, and 2 weeks later, the Senate followed. When Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the amendment on August 18, 1920, the amendment passed its final hurdle of obtaining the agreement of three-fourths of the states. Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby certified the ratification on August 26, 1920, changing the face of the American electorate forever.
(Source: National Archives and Records Administration)