Thursday, August 06, 2020

The History of Women's Voting Rights

In 1838 Kentucky allowed widows and some unmarried women who owned property to vote in elections relating to schools. It was the first time that women were allowed to vote in any state election. It would be nearly another eighty years before the 1920 19th Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, requiring all states to allow women to vote. (although it is important to remember that black women were only officially allowed to exercise their vote when the Voting Rights Act was passed in 1965). From 1838 to 1920 there was a slow spread of women's suffrage across the United States as suffrage campaigns steadily won voting rights for women across the country.

The University of Washington's Mapping American Social Movements Project has created an interactive timeline map of women's voting rights in the United States. The Woman Suffrage Timeline and Map shows when each state introduced women's suffrage, covering the years from 1838 to 1919.

The animated map of women's suffrage is just one of a number of interactive maps chronicling the history of the women's suffrage movement in America that have been created by the Mapping American Social Movements Project. The Woman Suffrage History and Geography 1838-1920 includes links to a story map exploring the history of the National Woman's Party, a map of the National Woman's Party offices and political actions in Washington D.C. and a map of National Woman's Party actions nationwide.
In the UK women over 30 (who met minimum property qualifications) were allowed to vote from 1918. Younger women had to wait until 1928, when all women and men over 21 were given the vote on equal terms. These voting rights were only agreed after many years of campaigning by the women's suffrage movement. 

Mapping Women’s Suffrage is a map of some of the thousands of Votes for Women campaigners who were active across England in 1911. By 1911 the women's suffrage movement in England had been active for over 50 years. In the 20th Century many women, frustrated at the lack of progress, became more militant in their campaigning. Many suffragettes pursued a strategy of ‘spectacle politics’, which included smashing windows, arson and other headline grabbing protests.

The Mapping Women's Suffrage map uses data from the 1911 census to map the locations of women suffrage campaigners in England. The 1911 census itself became an issue in the campaign for votes for women. Some suffragettes called for women to boycott the census with the slogan 'No Vote, No Census'.

On the interactive map the location of suffragettes are shown using colored markers. The colors of these markers indicate the suffragette society belonged to. If you click on a marker you can view the selected woman's census and all available information, including home address, age and occupation. Where available there is also detailed biographical information about her role in the suffragette movement.

No comments: