On August 26th, 1920, the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution was certified granting women the right to vote. In 1973, the U.S. Congress designated August 26th as “Women’s Equality Day.”
The battle for the 19th amendment was long and contentious. Many of the women who began the fight (at a Methodist Church in Seneca Falls, New York) would not live to see the amendment passed.
Celebrate 100 years of women’s suffrage by learning about how the 19th amendment came to be passed and the role of Methodist women in the struggle. Bishop Ward spoke of this history in a recent connections video.
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These resources can be borrowed for free by anyone involved with a United Methodist Church in the North Carolina Conference. We will mail them to your home! All you need to do is fill out the Resource Request Form.
Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony
This award-winning documentary by Ken Burns recounts the trials, tribulations, and triumphs of two pioneers striving to give birth to the women’s movement.
The full DVD is 3 hours long, but it can be broken up into sections using the accompanying resources for discussion. More info.
One Woman, One Vote
This program documents the struggle which culminated in the passing of the 19th Amendment in the U.S. Senate by one vote. Witness the 70-year struggle for women’s suffrage.
This DVD is a bit shorter coming in at close to 2 hours. More info.
Sojourner Truth: A Life, A Symbol by Nell Irvin Painter
After escaping slavery, Sojourner Truth became an itinerant Methodist preacher who championed human and civil rights including women’s suffrage.
This definitive biography traces her rise from slave to reformer. More info.
Anna Howard Shaw: The Work of Woman Suffrage
by Trisha Franzen
Anna Howard Shaw was one of the first women licensed to preach by the Methodist Episcopal Church, and she served as president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association for 11 years.
This scholarly biography unpacks her life story. More info.
A Wheel Within a Wheel: How I Learned to Ride the Bicycle with Some Reflections by the Way
by Frances E. Willard
Frances Willard was one of five women elected to serve as delegates to the 1888 General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, although ultimately she could not attend. As leader of The Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, she fought hard for women’s suffrage.
This slim book contains her own writings that offer lively insight into the mind of an independent woman who also reflected the temper of her times. More info.
Methodist Women Suffragists
The United Methodist News Service put together a short video and article on 6 Methodist women who fought for the vote.