Today marks the first day of Women's History Month, which means it is time to reflect on some of the most important moments in women's history.
The women's suffrage movement got moving in 1848 when the first Women's Rights Convention was held in Seneca Falls, New York. During the Civil War, the women's rights movement got tied in with the plight of slaves and many women of the time felt that they were working together with Negroes in order to win the same rights. When the war ended, however, the Negro vote became more important to politicians and women's rights took a backseat once again.
Enraged by the lack of attention women's rights were receiving, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and other women of the time started the American Equal Rights Association in 1866. The purpose of the organization was to help bring women together in an effort to fight for their rights. In 1868, women's rights suffered another blow, however, when the Fourteenth Amendment was ratified and defined voters as being male.
It wasn't until 1878 that the Woman's Suffrage Amendment was introduced. Nonetheless, it took a great deal of picketing, protesting, and petitioning before the Nineteenth Amendment was finally passed in 1920 and women earned the right to vote. Despite this victory, it took all the way until 1972 before Congress would pass the Equal Rights Amendment that protected women against discrimination. Nonetheless, the Amendment still has never been ratified.
Many women fail to realize the struggles their sisters have endured in order to get to where they are today. This is precisely why the National Women's History Project is holding a celebration in Washington DC on March 21. Reservations can be made by visiting the National Women's History Project website.