SPEAKER: This is a production of Cornell University.
CHARLES JERMY: Good evening, and welcome to the second of the summer series. My name is Charles, or Bud, Jermy, and I'm the Associate Dean of the School of Continuing Education and Summer Sessions. First, a thanks to Kathryn Boor, the Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, for the use of this auditorium.
On February 17th, 1867, Ezra Cornell wrote to his granddaughter, Eunice. "My dear granddaughter, your little letter came duly to hand, and I was very glad to hear from you. And Grandma was also very glad to hear from you. I shall be very glad when I get through with the business here so I can go home and see you and your little brothers, and have you and them go with me up on the hill to see how the workmen get along with the building of the Cornell University, where I hope you and your brothers and your cousins and a great many more children will go to school when they get large enough, and will learn a great many things that will be useful to them, and make them wise and good women and men."
"I want to have girls educated in the university as well as boys, so that they may have the same opportunity to become wise and useful to society that the boys have. I want you to keep this letter until you grow up to be a woman and want to go to a good school where you can have a good opportunity to learn, so you can show it to the president and the faculty of the university to let them know that it is the wish of your grandpa that girls as well as boys should be educated at Cornell University." Now, remember, 1867.
Women would be allowed to sit in on Cornell classes from the university's inauguration in 1868. And although women would be permitted to enroll officially by trustee action in 1872, it would be nearly 50 years before any woman would be able to vote legally in local, state, and national elections. And we are here tonight to hear a little of that story.
Karen Pastorello is a professor of history and chair of women and gender studies at Tompkins Cortland Community College, where she has been teaching since 1990. And she thinks she remembers teaching in the Cornell University summer session at about that point, too. So she's one of ours.
She earned a doctorate in modern American history from Binghamton University in 2001. Karen's publications include A Power Among Them-- Bessie Abramowitz Hillman and the Making of the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America-- that's University of Illinois Press 2008-- The Progressives-- Activism and Reform in American Society, 1893 to 1917, John Wiley and Sons, 2014, and she is the co-author of Women Will Vote-- Winning Suffrage in New York State, Cornell University Press, 2017. Karen, Women Will Vote-- Winning Suffrage.
KAREN PASTORELLO: [INAUDIBLE]
I just lost my mic. So thank you so much for coming and for your interest in the topic. It's a topic that I, in some way, shape, or form, have been interested in since I was a little girl long ago, growing up in Rochester, which some of you might recognize is the home of Susan B. Anthony. And I'm going to show you my age by telling you that I didn't even know that, I wasn't aware of that until I went away to college.
Nobody talked about it. I went to public school in Rochester. No one mentioned it. So I will be talking tonight about, as Bud said, the story of women winning the right to vote in New York. And going beyond just the big names, like I know people recognize Susan B. Anthony, but I hope to highlight not only the names, the leaders, the reasons, the tactics, but also the story and how consequential it was to the national story.
So why New York? Why write about it now? Why talk about it now? Well, last year was the centennial of women getting the right to vote in New York State. Women officially got the right to vote all the way up to the Office of the President in New York State on November 6th, 1917.
It took, if you date the movement from the Seneca Falls Convention, which I'll mention in just a minute forward, it took women in New York officially 69 years to earn that right, and women in the nation from Seneca Falls a full over 70 years. So it was a long, hard-fought battle. Women have not gotten any political right given to them. They've fought and continue to fight, as you'll see, for everything that we have today, either in New York or across the nation.
So I focused, along with Susan Goodyear, who is a professor of history at SUNY Oneonta, on the New York story because we were in a professional-- or we are in, I should say, a professional organization together called Upstate New York Women's History Organization. And we met there, and we were both working on suffrage and diverse topics. And we decided to explore why nobody had written the story before of women getting the right to vote in New York State.
Almost every state has its own story, and almost every state has its story recorded. New York has a lot written about women getting the right to vote, but usually it begins and ends about the time of Seneca Falls. It doesn't go much past that. So we decided to celebrate the centennial by researching, exploring, and eventually writing the book of this title, Women Will Vote-- Winning Suffrage in New York State.
Why New York State? Why is it important? Well, at the time of the suffrage movement in the 19th century, New York was the most populous state. It had more congressional votes than any other state. And New York was very important, or would become especially, once suffrage was won, very important to the national movement because once suffrage became a fact of life in New York State, women suffragists could now turn their attention to the national story and the fight for a federal amendment. So it energizes the national picture, as well.
So this is the Wesleyan Chapel in Seneca Falls, New York, which was originally built-- this is a recreation of it. It's standing there now like this, but it's been rebuilt. It was originally built by a group of abolitionists. And Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott had met in 1840 at an anti-slavery convention in London, and had discussed over time the lack of rights that women had. They were actually discriminated against in London. They were not allowed to participate in the anti-slavery convention there, merely because they were women. So that was the first insult.
So they decide to-- I'm condensing this story, as you might imagine, but they decided to hold a women's rights convention in Seneca Falls in July of 1848. It's planned by a handful of women, including Mott and Stanton, who were all former abolitionists and, with the exception of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, all had Quaker background. All the women, and eventually all the men, that attend the Seneca Falls Convention agree that women needed more rights.
Out of this meeting in July of 1848 comes a very famous document called the Declaration of Sentiments, modeled on the Declaration of Independence, that calls for women's suffrage in New York State. And the word suffrage literally means the right to vote. So what they're asking is very radical at the time.
Women getting the right to vote? Women barely were allowed to do what I'm doing now. And that is speak in public to what was called a promiscuous audience, meaning an audience of men and women. Women were silenced. They had, especially if they were married women, really no identity outside of that of their husbands. So without going too much into what we call the historical context, you can only imagine how radical this was.
Interestingly enough, though, not all historians agree that Seneca Falls is the beginning of the formal women's rights movement. One historian, in particular, a very well-known and well-respected historian named Lisa Tetrault, has recently wrote a book called The Myth of Seneca Falls. And what she argues in her book is that this meeting was important, that the declaration and the call for suffrage did come out of it, but it was not necessarily the true beginning of the women's rights movement.
Again, without getting too far off-track, I will say that, in the case of New York State, six women farm wives in Watertown, in the area of Watertown, Jefferson County, a small town, actually, called Depauville, had already petitioned the New York State legislature for their right to vote as property-owning, taxpaying women, in 1846, two years prior to Seneca Falls. And that's just one of the pieces of evidence that Tetrault-- and there's another historian, Lori Ginzberg, who writes a little bit about this.
So it's not so much that this is under contention. We know it's significant. We know it's important. But perhaps the importance has been overstated, primarily because Elizabeth Cady Stanton had a lot to do in the early history of the women's rights movement. And Tetrault and others surmised that she probably gave herself and those there a little too much credit.
Nevertheless, Stanton plays a big part, as does Susan B. Anthony, in the women's rights movement. This is a statue in Seneca Falls of Susan B. Anthony, on the left, meeting Elizabeth Cady Stanton in 1851. Many people assume that Susan B. Anthony was at the beginning of the movement there at the Seneca Falls Convention, when in fact she was not. She was actually doing something perhaps even more noble, teaching school in Canajoharie, New York.
So she's introduced, the two pillars are introduced by the woman in the middle, Amelia Bloomer, in 1851, three years or so after the official convention. And of course, they become very, very prominent in the women's rights movement. And today, I would hope that almost everybody knows their names and how they're connected. However, the point I would like to make, and one of the points we try to make in our book, is it's not all big-name leaders, women and/or men, that helped to win suffrage for women in New York State. It's literally tens of thousands of women and men who work, as I mentioned, decades to finally achieve what women from the beginning believed was rightly theirs.
One woman who's been left out of the story and is, I would argue, or we would argue, as important, if not more important, than both Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony in the beginning is Matilda Joslyn Gage. Matilda Joslyn Gage founds what is the most prominent woman's suffrage organization in New York State. There are others, but this is the big one. This is the one that does the brunt of the work for the entire period that the battle is being waged.
It is called, as you can see up there, the New York State Woman Suffrage Association. She founds it in 1869, after much controversy around the time of the ending of the Civil War over the 14th, 15th and 16th-- and what they hoped would be a 16th Amendment that would enfranchise women. It didn't happen. And eventually women, not only in New York State, but across the country, realize they need to take action. They need to organize. And in New York, it's Matilda Joslyn Gage that we need to give credit to.
She's from a Reform family in and around Fayetteville, New York. Her house is today a museum. Sally Roesch Wagner's dedicated her life to kind of reclaiming Gage's importance in the suffrage movement. She becomes the first president of the New York State Woman Suffrage Association. And her real work, her real accomplishment, I would say, is that she begins to found what are local suffrage clubs, suffrage activism at the grassroots level, which in a rural state-- and New York was very rural in the mid 19th and early 20th century-- this is crucial.
She is written out of suffrage history. Many of you may not have ever heard her name. And there's a reason she's written out. She's written out of suffrage history because she spoke out and, worse yet, wrote against the established Christian churches of the time for discriminating against women and being very oppositional when it came to the subject of women's rights. So Stanton and Anthony both agreed it'd be better to distance ourselves from this woman, despite her importance. And again, she's being recognized finally for her rightful place in suffrage and the wider path of women's history.
Another woman who has fairly local ties, and even, as you'll see there, Cornell ties, is Harriet May Mills. Harriet May Mills came from a very prominent family in the area of Syracuse. And today, her family home has been turned into a home for women that are in dire need and dire circumstances called the Vera House, if anybody recognizes that name. She graduated from Cornell in the 1880s and returned to Syracuse and took up hospital reform for a while, making conditions in hospitals more humane. They were pretty bad at the time.
And eventually, she gets involved with the suffrage cause. She picks up where Matilda Joslyn Gage left off. She, too, organizes what Gage called local suffrage clubs and what are known by many names, including the names that Harriet May Mills referred to them by, political equality clubs. They're all the same thing. They're little clubs, usually in hamlets, towns, and sometimes small towns and even big cities, where women and sometimes men are meeting together, discussing suffrage, writing, petitioning, publishing literature, doing whatever they can to move the cause of women getting the right to vote forward.
Harriet May Mills is the president of the New York State Woman Suffrage Association between 1910 and 1913. And under her tenure, the number of suffrage clubs goes from approximately 287 to over 400. So she really energizes the clubs. And you can see there, just for anybody who's at all interested in the much related topic of fashion and changing fashions of the time, her dress is very intricate lace. And it indicates kind of her wealthy status. Also keep in the back of your mind, or keep in your thoughts the high collar and the long sleeves, because this is, along with women's situation in their lives, this is going to change immensely very quickly.
While Mills is president, the New York State Association gets very close and has their annual convention in Ithaca. They kind of move around the state with these annual conventions to try to give women in different places a chance to meet and formally participate. And between October 31st and November 3rd, the convention is held at the Baptist church in Ithaca.
The program is very interesting to read and study. I have a couple pages here because I wanted to point out that there are many political equality clubs in this area, in the area of Tompkins County. And if you can see-- I'm not sure how well that's showing up, but if you're towards the front, you can probably see it-- Ithaca has a what they called political study club. Groton had a political equality club.
East Groton had a political equality club. And Tompkins County had its kind of umbrella political equality club that oversaw some of these smaller clubs. Newfield, which was not represented at this convention, did also at the time have a political equality club. So some of these small outlying towns that maybe today we think of as not being so politically focused or active were, in fact, not only hotbeds of suffrage, but prior to that, hotbeds of abolitionist activity.
Also you see the Cornell connection. As Bud was saying, Ezra Cornell from the beginning was a supporter of women's rights, a supporter of suffrage, eventually invites Susan B. Anthony to come to Ithaca to speak. She does come in 1869. But the turnout wasn't strong at all because, at the time, Ithaca was billed, believe it or not, as a very conservative town. So her turnout was not as well as you might expect. It's not as large as you might expect.
Also this program shows you that they're talking about items like tax suffrage. Women try to fight to win the right to vote, as those Jefferson County farmers did, by saying, we're property owners. We pay taxes. We deserve the right to vote. And they're still fighting for that in 1911. Also, school suffrage. These are little kind of baby steps on the way to women being fully enfranchised.
In New York State, women do win certain rights to vote for members of school boards in what they call third-rate cities, which we would equate with maybe small cities. And eventually, women are allowed also to run for school board positions. And in fact, many women suffragists end up running for the school board, and many women teachers also become involved in the suffrage movement, as you might imagine.
Also on this program, you see that there is a woman who is on one of the committees named Helen Brewster Owens. And Helen Brewster Owens was actually a professor of math at Cornell. And Helen Brewster Owens in 1911, this very same year, founded a suffrage club for faculty members to join. So she, too, was very innovative and very supportive of suffrage. The mayor of Ithaca and many clergy also attended.
Rural women are one of the groups that we focused on, largely because, as I said, New York State was primarily rural in the mid 19th to early 20th century. What we discovered very early on, or the way we framed our book very early on, was that various groups of women, whether they were rural, African-American, immigrant working women, or so on, eventually form a coalition. And the rural women are the first aspect of this larger what becomes identified as a suffrage coalition.
This is actually a picture of-- you can see Jennie Curtis Cannon from Delhi County. Some of her papers are housed at the [? Kratt ?] Rare Books Collection. Others are at the Delhi County Historical Society. So a lot of times, these papers or these suffrage organization archives are a little bit scattered. But Cannon is fairly easy to find, primarily because she's the wife of a very big-name banker.
And eventually, she moves, along with her husband, very conveniently, to New York City because, by about 1908, the headquarters of the women's suffrage movement will move from upstate New York down to the city. And the city suffrage workers connect very closely to the National American Woman Suffrage Organization headquartered in Washington. So there's a lot of networking, a lot of communication, a lot of affiliation back and forth.
Most of the rural women who participate in the suffrage movement have come out of either women's clubs, out of the granges, or sometimes out of the temperance movement. So it's not as if they just come in off the street and are off the rural roads, I should say, and are interested in suffrage. They were wives, daughters, sisters of farmers who worked very hard right alongside the men, and they talk, and they write in their diaries about watching on election day is their fathers and brothers and even the hired men go down to town to vote, and they have to stay behind.
And people like Carrie Chapman Catt, who becomes a national leader, is perplexed. Why isn't her mother mad? Her mother is doing the same thing. She's watching from the window. But a lot of these older women had become complacent at that point, and these younger women are pushing and saying, we want those rights, as well. So these women become a very necessary part of the coalition for suffrage.
And you can see there many, many uses of-- believe it or not, in 1911, around when this picture's taken, the automobile, as most of you know, is the latest, greatest technological innovation there is. So they make use of the automobile. And a lot of the suffragists end up trying to procure whether, it's by buying or renting or even using taxis, their own automobiles so they can go from town to town and have what are called open air speeches. Because a lot of times, crowds are attracted not so much by the women or what they have to say, but they're attracted to these automobiles because they've never seen one before, especially a yellow one when they're painted the suffrage colors.
Another very important and understudied aspect of the suffrage coalition are immigrant workers, particularly immigrant garment workers, mostly Jewish and Italian women, who come to light especially after the horrific Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City in 1911. What that fire does is it exposes to the rest of the nation the conditions that these garment workers and, really, other factory workers in general are working under. The long hours, the very meager pay, the young children that are working in the extremely dangerous conditions.
So these garment workers have already been trying to organize into unions to fight against what I just described. But now they see and they begin to be recruited by suffrage workers, they begin to see the vote as what we refer to as a panacea, a way to cure all their problems. Unfortunately, even with the Triangle fire, not everything is resolved. The New York State will form what's called the Factory Investigation Commission. Frances Perkins is one of the leaders of that commission, as are many other male politicians who go ahead and make a name for themselves through the work on the commission.
But they don't resolve especially the dangerous conditions, so much so that in Binghamton-- again, fairly close-- in 1913, there's another fire in a garment factory, and 36 young women are killed in that fire. And again, people are not always aware of that. But believe me, the workers and the suffragists at the time very much focused on that as a way to recruit people into the movement.
African-American women. Writing about rural women and immigrant workers is difficult due to the dearth of sources, but writing about African-American women in the suffrage movement was, we found, almost impossible. My co-author Susan, I have to give her credit, worked primarily on this chapter, and she literally scanned every possible primary source she could for mention of African-American women and their connection to suffrage in New York State. And she wrote a very enticing chapter on African-American women.
Many of the women in the African-American suffrage circles, just like the white women, came out of abolitionist circles. And on the left, you see a picture of someone who's very famous for her abolitionist activity, Harriet Tubman, but maybe not as well known as she should be for her suffrage activity. And she too supported the suffrage cause.
African-American women, though, had the burden of gender, and they had the burden of racism to overcome. So as Susan says, I'm going to quote from her, "They did not have the luxury of forming separate suffrage organizations because they had so much to fight for, especially not the least of which was lynching." They're fighting against lynching.
So their organizations are billed more as organizations of racial uplift that includes suffrage, that include anti-lynching activities, that include [AUDIO OUT] for African-American youth. So they're fighting for a whole realm of causes, but they're fighting nonetheless. And of course, there's the question. How racist was the suffrage movement? And that is a question that's currently being debated by historians interested in women's suffrage.
This picture-- I don't know how many people have seen this picture of Tubman before-- is very interesting in and of itself. It's estimated it was taken between 1867 and 1869. And you can see some handwriting-- it's her name-- on the bottom. And this picture this photograph actually came out of an album of 44 images of African-Americans that was recently discovered and auctioned by a major auction house, and purchased by the National Archives and the Smithsonian Institution.
It was an album owned by Emily Howland, a very famous suffragist that I'll mention in a minute, in a small town-- she lived in a small town called Sherwood, New York. And she kept these images for many, many years, and they remained hidden from the public view until really just three years ago, I think, this came to light. This is the only known picture of Harriet Tubman in her younger years, so it's extremely rare. And I will mention that the photograph album at auction brought over $130,000 because these pictures were so valuable.
On the right is another African-American woman's rights leader, and eventually a woman who does found a suffrage club called the Colored Woman's Suffrage League of Brooklyn. Her name is Sarah Garnet, and Sarah Garnet was a teacher who worked her way up through the ranks of teaching in Brooklyn until she became the first African-American woman principal in New York City. So she too is a very notable woman not only for her suffrage activity but for her other accomplishments as a pioneer for African-American women's rights.
It's vital to get the support of the men. That's what the suffrage movement is all about-- convincing men to vote yes, in the case of New York State in 1915, when the suffrage referendum comes on the ballot. How to best do this but to encourage men to form their own suffrage league? In 1908 and 1909, Anna Howard Shaw, who's a national leader, begins to correspond with Fanny Garrison Villard, who's the daughter of the famous William Lloyd Garrison. And they talk about the possibility of a men's league.
Fanny Garrison Villard's son, Oswald Garrison Villard, owns a very prominent New York newspaper, and they recruit him and all his money to support a men's league. Also, they recruit Rabbi Stephen Wise, who's a very much reform rabbi in New York City who supports women's rights, and really human and civil rights in general. So they both agree to lend their support, and they found what's called the New York Men's League for Women's Suffrage in 1909.
Max Eastman, who's pictured here on the left, is their organizer. He's a young, dashing man who comes to college campuses, goes everywhere from Vassar to Bryn Mawr. Came to Cornell in 1911 to help found what were called college suffrage leagues, leagues of what they called co-eds at the time, so that college students could come around and support suffrage as well as women and men in New York State.
Max Eastman is representative of suffrage and men who support suffrage in many ways. He comes from what we call a suffrage household. He was born in Canandaigua, New York. His mother was the first female congregationalist ordained minister, or one of the first in the country. Her name was Annis Ford Eastman. His sister, Crystal Eastman, was a radical member of heterodoxy. She became a lawyer and joined this radical group in Greenwich Village.
So he comes out of this suffrage household. He does what many other male suffragists do over the course of their life, and they marry a suffrage woman. And Max Eastman marries a woman lawyer, also a member of heterodoxy, named Ida Rauh. So he's got a sister, a mother, and a wife, all suffragists. He couldn't help but be a suffragist himself.
He's also a socialist, and people may recognize him. He's pretty prominent in the early 1900s. He goes on to be the lead editor for The Masses, a socialist publication at the time. He and the other men that are leaders-- and by the way, a lot of Cornell professors and the presidents, the various presidents over time of Cornell, also join the men's league. Eventually, in 1911, they begin to take part in these parades. Parades heighten visibility of the suffrage cause.
So what do suffragists need? They need organization, they need education, they need money to fund all this, and they need heightened visibility. And this is where the men come in. They help heighten visibility. And they also have lots of money. A lot of these men in the men's league are not only professors but bankers, financiers, railroad-affiliated men, businessmen, and so on.
They March in 1911 in New York City. That's what that photograph on the right is. It's a contingent of 89 men. They are jeered at. They have things thrown at them. They're called names. They're told to go home to their mothers. So they're really humiliated, but nonetheless they persist. They keep marching.
The following year, by 1912, over 500 men march in the annual Woman's Suffrage Parade in New York City. So they really do a lot to help not only support in New York City, but they go around the state and found men's leagues in places like Messina, New York, and Potsdam, and Rochester ends up having a men's league, and so on. Oops. OK.
Mary Elizabeth Pidgeon is a member of what we term the third generation of women suffragists. So because suffrage runs the course over such a long period, we end up with what we refer to at the time, and the progressive period is very much more modern, and they'll refer to these women as new women. Mary Elizabeth Pidgeon represents a new woman. Like Max Eastman and many of the other leaders I've mentioned, she's college educated. That deems her being new.
She was a teacher. She's from a Quaker family. She grew up in Virginia and eventually moves to Media Pennsylvania. She teaches school for about three years, but she found the work tedious and the pay poor. So she decided to do something a little bit more exciting and hopefully a little bit more financially profitable, and she becomes a speaker for the National American Woman's Suffrage Association.
They very quickly recognize that Mary Elizabeth Pidgeon is bright. She has great speaking skills because she's been a teacher. She is new in that she's stylish. Notice the neckline that I told you to keep in the back of your mind is no longer there. This is the first transition to what eventually we hear referred to as-- I'm saying new women. You also hear flapper, the term flapper.
What goes first is the neckline, and then the sleeves come up, and then the hem comes up, and then the hair. You can see her hair no longer has that classic Gibson Girl bob. So she's new, she's young, she's attractive, she's modern, and she can appeal across a wide range of audiences. She speaks to immigrant workers in Buffalo. She speaks to fairgoers at the Cuyahoga County Fair in Moravia, New York. And eventually she ends up working for the New York State Suffrage Association by 1917 in Auburn, which is part of the reason her picture says Auburn, New York, on it.
She is somebody who left letters behind. She wrote quite often, especially in 1916, 1917, towards the culmination of the campaign, to what she termed her folks, her parents. And we know from these letters-- it was like finding a treasure trove-- for me, anyway. We know from these letters what the daily life of a suffrage worker-- or suffrage organizer, in her case-- was like.
We know how much she made. We know she was concerned with her appearance. We know she made connections among prominent leaders. And we know she traveled all the time and all over the place. So her letters, which are at Swarthmore, her alma mater, are extremely valuable to anybody who's interested in studying suffrage at what we might term a micro level.
The parades go on. This is the 1913 parade, the year after the men became more numerous. And women in the parades are evidence of the coalition that's being formed. The signs are a little bit difficult to read. And actually, this is a picture very similar to the picture on the cover of our book.
But what it's showing us is that there are many groups, whether it's the men's league, whether it's the political equality clubs, whether it's the New York State Women's Suffrage Association, many, many groups and organizations have now come together and are represented with the common goal of suffrage. One of the things that people are sometimes interested in or ask me about are the colors that are representative of suffrage. And many of the suffragists, until the time of the war in particular, are pacifists.
They tend to wear white, especially once World War I breaks out, 1914, '15, before we become involved. White is also a color associated with purity, virginity, and also suffrage. In the United States, purple and gold are also colors associated with suffrage. The National Women's Museum has good information on their website about the origins of the symbolism of these colors. But purple and gold are big in the US. In England, which is also undergoing its own movement, gold and green tend to be the more popular colors. So anyway, unfortunately, a lot of these pictures, primary source pictures, are in black and white, so we have to describe sometimes the colors are wearing.
Stunts. As we work towards the 1915 referendum, what we call stunts, any kind of activity that will catch people's attention, is used. This is a stunt called the melting pot. And on the bottom, across the bottom, the caption reads, "Women contribute jewelry to the cause." So it always reminds me of those advertisements I used to see on television once in a while where it said, bring us your broken gold and silver and we'll give you money for it.
Well, that's what these suffragists are doing. They're saying, bring us your old jewelry, the jewelry you don't want. Put it in our bucket. You can see the bucket there right in the front. We'll melt it down and turn it into money that we'll use for the suffrage cause.
So that's just one of many, many stunts, and it's really an illustration of how the tactics of the New York State women's suffrage movement move away from being what we call passive letter writing, bringing petitions to Albany, opposing candidates who don't support suffrage to these more active endeavors, like parades and melting jewelry, and dropping literature from planes, and having a pageant in Rochester down the Genesee River with boats at night. And they did just about everything imaginable. They also were big at going to fairs because, of course, fairs generally happen during nice weather, although upstate New York we can't guarantee you. Mary Elizabeth Pidgeon writes about how she's knee deep in mud with the pigs at the Moravia Fair.
But this is a picture of vendors. It's a man on the left, making hot dogs and giving them to suffrage workers so that they can sell them to the crowd at the fair in Greenwich, New York. And these kinds of scenes took place across the state, and especially became more numerous once we got closer to the referendum.
As I mentioned earlier, education is always something that's vital to any movement. So the suffragists were no different. For a while there early on, they had what were called correspondence schools, where you could sign up-- it cost a quarter, which was quite a bit of money in the early 1900s-- and you can sign up to be a correspondence student. And they would send you a package of lessons that taught you how to become a citizen, and what to do with your citizenship responsibilities once women got the right to vote.
They also taught through correspondence courses and eventually through these two-week summer schools, at least one of which I know of was held in Ithaca where the leaders-- in this case, it was Gertrude Foster Brown-- came to towns and cities across New York and held their suffrage schools and taught women how to be suffrage workers. They also taught-- if you can see very clearly on the blackboard, they also taught people how to be poll watchers so that they could ensure that the men who supported suffrage were being given every opportunity to vote for suffrage. And if they weren't in attendance at the polls and they were known to be pro suffrage, they went and rounded them up and brought them to the polls.
So unfortunately, despite all the efforts, the referendum fails in New York in 1915. New York's not alone. It also failed in Massachusetts and Pennsylvania and New Jersey. But New York doesn't give up. The other states either take a breather or give up entirely and wait for the Federal Amendment.
New York suffragists regroup at midnight the same night they found out that their suffrage referendum had been defeated, and they continue to form suffrage clubs, to use those as bases from which to organize and go out. They make the commitment to go out and knock on every single door. And they were serious. They did that.
The suffrage leaders, like Anthony and later on Carrie Chapman Catt, traveled to over 60-- at the time, there were 60 counties in New York State. Every single county was visited by a very prominent leader in an effort to secure the suffrage referendum. Marketing intensified the second time around. New York suffragists allied with male politicians and ensured that suffrage would be on the ballot two years later in 1917. The legislative process took that long.
And in the meantime, suffragists wanted to put votes for women or women's suffrage on everybody's lips. They wanted it to be as visible as it could possibly be. They didn't want to turn anywhere without seeing a sign, drinking out of a paper cup, giving a Christmas stocking, you can see in the middle. They had cigarettes that had suffrage stamps. They had calendars, playing cards, dolls, calendars, the list is endless-- postcards, plays, poems, pageants, even products.
If you look in the upper left there, Shredded Wheat is pro women's suffrage. There were soap. There was a special soap called Blancher soap that was billed as a pro-suffrage soap. There were stoves that were advertised where the companies were supportive of suffrage.
So it's really a lot of fun to go through the records of the time and see some of these advertisements and how suffrage was promoted. Many famous artists end up drawing or even sometimes painting, drawing cartoons or painting pictures. And those works become very valuable because of their subject matter. By the way, if anybody has suffrage post cards, especially if they have anything to do with holidays, like Valentine's Day or Easter or Halloween, they're worth an awful lot of money.
That poster-- you can see it, it's outlined in gold, the second from the right-- is a biblical image. And it was painted by a Buffalo artist. And there is an original of this poster. Right now, as far as I know, it's still at the Howland Stone Store Museum in Sherwood, New York.
There was another original that came up for appraisal on "Antiques Roadshow," and it was valued at approximately $15,000. And this was quite a few years ago. Part of it is the art. Another factor in its value is that it is edged in pure 24-karat gold. So that helps make it very valuable, too.
The war intervenes. We title our chapter on World War I "The Great Interrupter." And historians to date have taken either one of two views-- the war helped women win suffrage, or the war put suffrage on hold. We argue it did neither.
What happens is, suffrage activity continues. The suffragists use the war to continue to market their cause. They continue to parade, but they pose as patriots. They do not want to appear as pacifists, as many of them originally were, because they would have been considered at the time, once the United States was officially involved, unpatriotic and treasonous, actually. And that was the worst thing that you could do for the suffrage cause.
So they grin and bear it, and many of them march in the suffrage parades. This is actually a picture of Mrs. Katrina Tiffany. And by the way-- well, you can see the picture says Mrs. Louis Tiffany. It's very difficult, in many cases, to find women's first names during this time, if they're married. They're always called Mrs. John Doe or Mrs. Louis Tiffany.
We searched and searched and found out her name is Katrina Tiffany. She's the wife of the Louis Tiffany, who founded the jewelry store. And there's a story behind this picture. And whenever anybody talks about it or tries to caption it, they talk about how Louis Tiffany is glaring from a window. He was not at all a supporter of women's suffrage, yet his wife was. So women were not always supported, and there were many, many anti-suffrage men, women, and organizations, as well.
Finally, in November, as I mentioned in the beginning of the talk, on November 6, 1917, women in New York achieved victory. What does this mean? They can vote all the way up through the Office of President. What do women do once victory is won in New York? Well, a few retire. They're just tired. Some have been working decades now.
But most keep going. Most keep going at the national level. They do something to support the cause. The New York State Woman's Suffrage Association evolves into the League of Women Voters. So most of the women stay politically active.
Some women run for office. Very quickly in the midterm elections in 1918, New York has two women elected to the assembly. Ida Sammis was a Republican. And rumor has it-- or actually, the story around her has it-- that when she got into her office, there was a spittoon that had been occupied by a man. And the very first thing she did is polish the spittoon and put flowers in it, used in for a vase.
Mary Lilly was a Democrat from the county of New York, and she's actually also elected to the 142nd New York Assembly. Both these women pay particular attention and initiate bills to benefit women and children. Some women went overseas and wrote about the war that was still raging in November of 1917. And some brave souls went to Washington-- we know of over 60 women from New York State who went to Washington and participated in the famous White House pickets that began in 1913 but became very risky by 1917. Many of these women end up being arrested and put in the Algonquin workhouse and going on hunger strikes. So we do have record of women doing that.
In Ithaca, women register to vote. More women register with the Republican Party than any other party. The Republican Party is actually the first major party to support women's suffrage. The Progressives and the Prohibition Party had supported it before that. Some register for the Democratic Party, some register for the Prohibition Party, and a small number register with the Socialist Party.
So at the History Center in Ithaca, which is currently on the way to moving, relocating it to the Commons, we can find the record books of New York-- or I should say, women and men in Tompkins County who were registered to vote in 1917, '18, '19, and so on. Just because these people, though-- you need to keep in mind, just because these people, women and men, are registering to vote, it doesn't mean they voted the way they registered, or it doesn't mean they voted at all. So again, more work needs to be done. But at least we have a sense of political activism following the victory.
This is a picture of James Laidlaw in the center of the picture who was, for a long time, the president of the men's league in New York, and his wife, who was an official in the New York State Women's Suffrage Association, coming out of a lobbying session with Congress. They went as a couple and took a contingent with them to lobby in front of the Federal Congress for a Federal Amendment. or the National Congress, I should say, for a Federal Amendment.
This picture has a lot of irony attached to it. If I had to title this picture, I might borrow from a film of this name called One Woman, One Vote which is-- actually, that film is about the vote of Harry T. Burn, the young Senator from Tennessee. This is Emily Howland, and Emily Howland looks like a little stooped-over woman at the age of 92. She was a very prominent abolitionist. She went South in the years following the Civil War and established Freedmen's Bureau schools.
She eventually came back to her home in Sherwood, New York, and founded the Sherwood and Cayuga County political equality clubs. She was the largest donor to the New York State Woman's Suffrage Association that we have. Catt, who was a woman of national prominence-- Carrie Chapman Catt. She's the president of the national at the time of the victory. Anna Howard Shaw, Susan B. Anthony, they donated maybe Anthony $10, $20, $30. Shaw donated $50. I think Catt donated maybe $75.
Emily Howland donated thousands at a time. She showed up-- her donations, the financial contributions of some of the suffragists-- or most of them, actually-- appeared on a research trip I took really only a year or so ago, I think, in the records of Susan B. Anthony's secretary, Emma Sweet, at the University of Rochester. She kept a list of all the financial contributions.
Again, so much to study. And as Susan would say, almost all these women need biographies. Hardly any of them have good biographies, or biographies at all.
Emily Howland was from the Howland family, which was a merchant family, a very wealthy family, which enabled her to donate money. Her niece, Isabel Howland, as Emily got older, picked up suffrage work. Isabel Howland was also a graduate of Cornell University.
Emily Howland is on her way to vote the first time women can vote for president because even though New York women could vote for president as of 1917, there wasn't a presidential election until 1920. So this is a very important picture. Only one woman that attended Seneca Falls lived long enough to vote in this election. Her name was Charlotte Woodward Pierce. Unfortunately, Charlotte Woodward Pierce, who had been a young teenage glove worker at a mill in Seneca Falls in 1848, was in her 90s at the time women could finally vote, and she was too ill to even make it to the polls. Of course, Stanton and Anthony and the other leaders had died long before.
But still, women vote in New York. Still, in New York and in the country, women are the largest minority. We outnumber men numberwise, but we're considered a minority because if we look at the definition of a minority as receiving differential or, in this case, discriminatory treatment, that's why we're considered a minority. So I'd like to close by saying that we still have, as you know, a long way to go, and probably even farther to go next week or next year. We're regressing as I speak.
There's a glimmer of hope. Paid parental leave went into effect in New York State-- it had been in effect in a handful of states prior to this-- as of January 1, 2018 this year. And I just talked to somebody whose daughter took advantage of it, and it was the first I had heard of somebody actually taking advantage of that opportunity. Child care is a woman's issue, it's a man's issue, it's a family issue, and it still has to be addressed. The lack of affordable, accessible child care in this country is literally, without mincing words, a crime.
Health insurance continues to be a problem-- affordable, accessible health care in general. And last but not least, sexual discrimination and harassment relating not only to women, but to men. We still have a long way to go. Thank you.
I'd be happy to take some questions if anybody would like to ask. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: Once women got the vote, was there a large proportion of them who did vote?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Not necessarily. As I said, we still need to work really hard to determine who registered, and who voted, and how they voted. The general consensus by many historians is that women failed to take advantage of the opportunity to vote.
But again, if we look at political activity as being more than just voting, we could make an argument that was not the case. So that's the side I'd like to fall on. But thank you for asking. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: What was the first state that women got the right to vote, and when was it?
KAREN PASTORELLO: It was Wyoming, 1893. The first four states to grant women the right to vote actually were in the west. So Wyoming comes in from a territory into statehood granting women the right to vote. Although I just read the other day that even though Utah was one of those original four, they did rescind women's suffrage in 1892. So I need to look at this a little bit more closely than has generally been looked at before.
But yeah, Wyoming 1893. Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and-- I always forget the fourth state.
KAREN PASTORELLO: Idaho, thank you. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: What were the main arguments for and against women's suffrage?
KAREN PASTORELLO: For and against?
AUDIENCE: No, not for. I know about for.
KAREN PASTORELLO: OK, against. They threaten men's power politically, economically, and legislatively.
AUDIENCE: What did they say at the time? Women weren't smart enough?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Well, they said all kinds of things. Women were too soft to be citizens. Babies would be-- everything. Babies would be deformed if pregnant women voted. Let's see, what else did they say?
In a nutshell, it threatened women's proper place, that separate sphere argument. Women were relegated to stay in their homes, and coming out was dangerous, all the way around. It was dangerous to the family. That's one of the main claims. It threatened the family.
It's all over the place, but there's an original postcard in the Lindseth Cornell Collection here that shows a man holding a baby and trying to iron and everything. And so they were afraid men would get stuck with the housework, and the woman would go off to work. Yeah, that's the sum of some of the many arguments. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: Was there any violence at these parades?
KAREN PASTORELLO: The parades in this country were generally peaceful. When the picketers were arrested at the White House in 1917 and then put into the workhouse and force fed, that was extremely violent. The real violence we tend to associate with the suffrage movement generally occurs more in Europe and in other places than in the US.
So in some ways, it depends what you mean by violent. Yes, it did get dangerous. It did get risky. Other kinds of retribution-- people may be losing their jobs for speaking out. Being written out of history, as we saw the extreme case with Gage.
AUDIENCE: Just that I was thinking of some of the antics that occurred in Charlottesville, that sort of stuff. Although that [? unfortunately ?] has nothing to do with this discussion of--
KAREN PASTORELLO: Yeah. I'm just trying to think. I don't think we have any suffragists actually-- oh, yes, we do. Well, we do have a suffragist who loses her life for the cause, and that is Inez Milholland. It wasn't because of violence, though. It was because of exhaustion.
Inez Milholland was the woman up on the horse. Let me see if I can back it up to the parade. I didn't even-- let's see, how far back? There she is. She's the woman up on the horse.
She's very beautiful. She's a lawyer. She's from a very prominent pro-suffrage family. She's considered an icon of beauty. She travels so much and works so hard that she dies shortly after this parade. I think it's within six months after this parade of a form of anemia, really. And so she's considered a martyr for the suffrage cause, yeah, but it wasn't violent. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: To what extent was the New York suffrage movement involved in the national suffrage movement? And at what point did presidential candidates begin to [INAUDIBLE]?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Great question. The first one is a little bit easier to answer. New York State was always involved in the national movement. There was a lot of networking and affiliation back and forth.
It becomes particularly involved in 1916, '17, when Carrie Chapman Catt, who's pretty much running the national movement without any specific-- or running the state movement goes up to the national headquarters. She cries because she doesn't want to leave New York. But she's the only woman for the job, so she's convinced eventually to go.
As far as presidential candidates, they tend to say what they need to say when they need to say it. Theodore Roosevelt went back and forth. His party, the Progressive Party, in 1912 technically supported suffrage. But apparently, he did not totally buy into it personally.
Charles Evans Hughes, who was a Democrat-- or I'm sorry, the Republican candidate for the governor of New York in 1916 was a very vocal pro-suffrage advocate. But of course, he loses the election, so that didn't help matters. As I said, the Republican Party likes to take credit for being the first major party-- they just love it-- to support women's suffrage. But they really don't come out in any concrete way until 1916 for women's suffrage, which is pretty late.
And the Democrats, especially in New York, are an odd bunch because in the city, we're dealing with Tammany Hall. And Tammany Hall, until the second referendum, opposed. They were vocally opposed to women's suffrage. In 1917, they decided to remain neutral. And a lot of people, particularly immigrant men affiliated with the Democratic Party, took that as a signal that it was OK to vote for suffrage.
KAREN PASTORELLO: Wilson. Oh, boy, he was tough. Wilson, of course, is a Democrat. He says at different times he supports suffrage. It's not until the hunger strikes that he really begins to come out and say he supports it, and really mean that he supports it. So I would date him as late '17, 1918. Yeah, his wife apparently influenced his eventual pro-suffrage stance.
AUDIENCE: You mentioned that there was more violence in Europe than in the US. What is the global context? And [INAUDIBLE] the right to vote? Where do they--
KAREN PASTORELLO: Where do they fit in? They're one of the first. Women in England get full suffrage in 1917 and, of all places, in Russia as well because of the revolution going on there. So there's some European countries, probably just a few, that are a little bit ahead of us. And then other countries follow our, if you could call it, so-called lead, I guess. Europe's in our lead, yeah. Mhm? First.
AUDIENCE: Can you say something about [INAUDIBLE] suffragists during prohibition?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Yes. Frances Willard became the president of the Women's Christian Temperance Union, which was the big-- it was prior to prohibition, so as temperance evolves into prohibition. And Frances Willard is very pro-suffrage. And she allies, as does the Prohibition Party, by the late 1890s. Right before her death, she convinces the Prohibition Party to come out in favor of women's suffrage.
Women who are for prohibition or for temperance believe that the vote and having a political voice will help them do things like get jobs, will help them have rights so that if husbands don't take the pledge was what they called it, or husbands abandoned families, or there's instances of domestic violence, women can go out into the public sphere, and that the vote would be helpful in that regard. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: Following up on your--
KAREN PASTORELLO: Oh, I'm sorry. I was-- the gentleman in the front. I didn't see anybody. So hang on to your question just a second.
OK, go on. Gentleman in the front.
AUDIENCE: My grandmother turned 21 in 1920 and told me about voting the first time that women were able to vote. She actually voted here again. And she told me about going into the polling place, which had been a spot that was males only prior.
KAREN PASTORELLO: That happened a lot, yeah.
AUDIENCE: And the stories about the men who she saw mostly as teasing, commenting about, well, the country's going to hell now, and so on. But I wonder if you know about attempts to harass women when they tried to vote, or suppress the women's vote.
KAREN PASTORELLO: Yeah, there were many attempts, as there are with any minority that wins the right to vote, including African-Americans, to suppress or oppose their right to vote. I think most of the instances that I'm most familiar with tend to be personal instances where husbands don't want their wives to vote. Or maybe if their wives are voting, they would like it if they voted the same party line the men were voting.
So like you said, some of the early polls were in saloons or near saloons, or men's clubs that women weren't necessarily allowed in. Sometimes just getting to a place was difficult-- more difficult, maybe, for women than for men. So there's lots of obstacles, maybe some are more obvious than others, that women have to overcome if they're going to vote. For some, it could be even the obstacle of not being educated enough.
And of course, that's the primary purpose initially of the League of Women Voters, is to educate women voters so that when the time comes, they not only what to do but how to do it. Yeah, I don't know if that answered your question. Somebody behind us had one?
AUDIENCE: Following up on your comments about the work that remains to be done, would you comment the recent efforts to revive the Equal Rights Amendment?
KAREN PASTORELLO: I can't comment at any length on it. I will say, though, that I testified before a hearing commission sponsored by the New York State Department of Labor last summer, right around a year ago. And there is talk among the coalition of women in the Senate in New York of reviving an Equal Rights Amendment in New York State. So that's my rather limited answer.
And unfortunately, that's how a lot of this legislation comes to pass. It starts at the grassroots, as I illustrated, then it moves up to county and state, and eventually federal level. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: When and how did the transition from [? women's ?] suffrage organizations take place to [INAUDIBLE] women voters?
KAREN PASTORELLO: When and how? In the case of New York, it begins even before the victory in 1917. So we were lucky enough to receive a grant to go to Columbia University, which houses the official papers of the New York State Women's Suffrage Association. And it also is part of a sister collection houses the League of Women Voters papers.
The League of Women Voters starts out in New York City as the Council. It's called the Council of Women Voters. So the impetus, I think, comes out of the city, where the suffrage movement by then is headquartered, and gradually spreads to the cities and towns across the state. Many of the women who are leaders in the New York State Women's Association very quickly join the Council and eventually the Leagues of Women Voters.
So the names are familiar, and their biographies are located in those records. And those biographies tell you exactly what activities, what suffrage activities in particular, these women were involved in as they transition to the League of Women Voters, if you're interested in that. Mhm? The woman with this sunglasses.
AUDIENCE: How much nativist feeling did you come across? I remember we a biography of-- I believe it was Elizabeth Cady Stanton. And she was trying to whip up sentiment to have women vote, and she said, immigrants in New York City who come from Italy or Russia, the men, if they become citizens, they're able to vote. We, upstate women or women, can't vote.
KAREN PASTORELLO: Right.
AUDIENCE: That was really-- I was shocked at that sentiment. Did you come across other similar opinions?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Not in the primary sources. Stanton is probably the most well known. And she also says immigrant men and criminals-- she lumps them into the same category-- are going to be allowed to vote, and women aren't. When somebody said I commented that more work needs to be done, this is one of the aspects where much more work needs to be done.
And I'm not even going to term it nativist. I'm going to call it racist, and racism in suffrage. Also, Stanton tends to be the big-name leader that we associate with nativism and racism. Anthony is another story. She's a more interesting study. Both of them allied with a racist, a Southern racist, named George Francis Train right at the conclusion of the Civil War so that he would fund the publication of their newspaper. The Revolution.
So people term that selling out their souls. They sold their souls to this racist Democrat from the South so they could get money to publish a women's suffrage newspaper. So that's the start of the issue, or at least that's how a lot of people see the start of the issue.
But if you look at Anthony at a more local level, which I did because that's where, actually, I started, is looking at Rochester, my hometown, in the suffrage movement and the work that Anthony did at the local level. She has many African-American friends. Hester Jeffrey, she's in our book, is an African-American suffragist, very prominent in Rochester. Anthony actually had asked Jeffrey to give a eulogy at her funeral, which she did.
But the interesting thing is, Anthony does not mention at all in any papers that anybody knows of at this point. Again, more work needs to be done. Maybe she's there. I don't know.
But Anthony also has a very famous friendship with Frederick Douglass. Frederick Douglass is the only African-American we know of that was at the Seneca Falls Convention. He defends the very controversial resolution leading to women's suffrage coming out of that convention, and he is a lifelong friend of Anthony. So that relationship studied in detail would probably be very revealing. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: Did you know in the [? last ?] election, 1% of women who registered to vote actually did vote then?
KAREN PASTORELLO: No, but I can tell you I was trying to research that today, and it's hard to find. So I still need to do some work myself, yeah. I don't. It's very hard to find it broken down by gender. It's easy to find it broken down by party and women in each political party, but the other statistics-- I'm sure they're out there. I just needed to do a little bit more research to find them.
But that's an excellent question, yeah. Mhm?
AUDIENCE: You mentioned [INAUDIBLE]. Did you know that [INAUDIBLE]?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Towards women voting? Yeah, most universities towards the end of the movement I can speak to because that's when the college equal suffrage leagues are founded in New York State after 1908. The universities in general are supportive of suffrage. The co-eds, the students in general-- again, it's general-- are supportive of suffrage. Faculty can go either way, and administrators can go either way.
And in fact, there was a famous story at Vassar where the president-- I can't remember his name-- of Vassar wouldn't let the college suffrage club meet and the grounds of Vassar. In fact, Inez Milholland, I believe, was an alum of Vassar. Instead, they met in a cemetery outside the school. So I can't answer that question with any definitive knowledge, but that's what I know in general. Yes?
AUDIENCE: Do you [INAUDIBLE] women's participation [INAUDIBLE]?
KAREN PASTORELLO: It didn't hurt, but our actual participation in the war, and women stepping up, like the Rosie-- and by the way, I didn't mention that Mary Elizabeth Pidgeon becomes a director of research for the US Department of Labor, and is the person who wrote all the reports on women's employment in World War II, which led to our Rosie the Riveter icon.
Anyway, but getting back to World War I, because our participation was so short lived, women that did step up into what we call traditional men's job-- in Cincinnati, for instance, streetcar conductors. Something like 150 women were hired as streetcar conductors. They're fired within weeks after the war is ended because they're women, and they had no legal recourse.
So the idea was there, the opportunity, the possibility, but it was very short lived. And it wouldn't really affect women's political stance until the World War II era, yeah. Mhm?
KAREN PASTORELLO: Did women's opportunities affect--
KAREN PASTORELLO: For the National Women's Party? Is that--
KAREN PASTORELLO: Well, yeah. Women had more luck running as candidates with the Socialist Party than either of the two major parties. It was really hard for women to get their foot in the door when it came to being candidates in either of the two major parties.
Melanie Gustafson-- if you're interested in more information, Melanie Gustafson wrote a book about women in the Republican Party, which traces the history of the Republican Party and their attitude towards women from the early 1900s to after the passage of suffrage. Yeah. I don't know so much about the Democrats because they weren't so pro-suffrage at the time. Yeah, Dave?
AUDIENCE: [INAUDIBLE] of President Wilson and others have argued that the concept of the US Constitution [INAUDIBLE] a few years earlier in the fight for [INAUDIBLE]?
KAREN PASTORELLO: It must not have because very few states won suffrage between, say, 1917 and 1920, if that's what you mean. Yeah. So [AUDIO OUT] right, Wilson does come out with its stance, but I don't know how effective it was, as I said, because the number of states who won was-- I think it was pretty much zero. virtually zero. I'd have to double check, but yeah.
So one more question, and then I think we'll wrap it up, if it's OK, yeah. Oh, go ahead. You didn't have a chance yet.
AUDIENCE: What was the position of the churches on women's suffrage?
KAREN PASTORELLO: That's where the work needs to be done. We were just talking about that earlier. Race in suffrage is a big topic that remains yet to be further explored in the way that it deserves. Religion is an extremely complicated topic.
Most of the major religions-- including Catholicism, of all religions, and Judaism-- come around and do speak out. The leading clergy in New York City-- we can find it in The Woman Voter, which was the official publication of the New York City woman's suffrage party. Most of the major clergy and rabbis come out in favor of suffrage on the eve of the victory.
But that is an area that is wide open and rich. I mean, the sources are there. It's just a matter of mining them, yeah. Thank you so much.
SPEAKER: This has been a production of Cornell University. On the web at cornell.edu.
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Drawing on her recently released book, coauthored with Susan Goodier, Women Will Vote: Winning Suffrage, Karen Pastorello discussed how women in New York State struggled for more than six decades to win the right to vote. She highlighted the grassroots activism of rural, urban, African American, Jewish, immigrant, and native-born women who formed a loose coalition aimed at attaining full suffrage for women.