Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence
Tuesday, August 25, 2020 – Sunday, October 18, 2020
Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence is a poster exhibition from the Smithsonian that celebrates the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment and explores the complexity of the women’s suffrage movement and the relevance of this history to Americans’ lives today. It tells the story of women’s voting rights, of inclusion in and exclusion from the franchise, and of our civic development as a nation.
The crusade for women’s suffrage is one of the longest reform movements in American history. Between 1832 and 1920, women citizens organized for the right to vote, agitating first in their states or territories and, simultaneously, through petitioning for a federal amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Based on the National Portrait Gallery’s exhibition of the same name, Votes for Women addresses women’s political activism, explores the racism that challenged universal suffrage, and documents the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which prohibits the government from denying U.S. citizens the right to vote on the basis of gender. It also touches upon the suffrage movement’s relevance to current conversations on voting and voting rights across America.
Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery. This project received support from the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative.