Throughout the month of August, Start TV pays tribute to the brave women of the suffrage movement who worked so diligently for passage of a Constitutional amendment guaranteeing the right to vote regardless of gender. After a nearly century-long struggle for women’s suffrage, Congress finally passed the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote in 1919. On August 18, 1920, Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify it, and on August 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment was signed into law by Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby, resulting in the biggest extension of voting rights in U.S. history.
The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.
As the 19th Amendment turns 100, My Start Story celebrates the efforts and achievements of 15 women who helped make the suffragists’ dream a reality. Starting Sunday, August 2nd, My Start Story will feature daily videos highlighting the achievements of these incredible women and the suffrage movment from the Seneca Falls Convention in upstate New York in 1848 to the victorious adoption of the 19th Amendment in 1920.
My Start Story is also pleased to use this historic moment in time to include the stories of women of color who were integral to the success of the suffrage movement but who themselves were still not able to vote after the 19th Amendment was passed. Most African American women in the South, along with African American men, were barred from voting based on their race, while Asian immigrants were largely excluded from American citizenship, which made them ineligible to vote.
Through these suffragists’ varied stories, My Start Story also explores the piecemeal progress of the movement. These women worked not only at the national level but also at the state and local level. Consequently, even before 1920, 15 states, mainly in the West, had given women full voting rights, while a handful of other states, had granted them partial voting rights.
Be sure to also follow along with our timeline of the Suffrage Movement throughout the month of August as we celebrate 100 years of women's right to vote.