Browse Exhibits (4 total)
Individual Evanston women made significant contributions in bringing about women's political equality across Illinois and the United States. However, they also knew that organizing themselves to work collectively would make the movement even more successful.
Women's suffrage organizations existed long before the 19th Amendment was passed in 1920. The organizations featured in this exhibit formed during the 19th century, building support for the movement throughout the rest of the century.
Some of the organizations featured here remained local to Evanston, but some gained a national following in the years leading up to the passage of women's suffrage. Additionally, some of these groups dissolved after 1920, but many continued to work toward other goals. Click on the name of an organization to the right to find out more!
Evanston women played a significant role in achieving nation-wide women's suffrage. One of the ways they did this was through their involvement in the Illinois suffrage movement.
Along with other women across the state, Evanston women long advocated for the right to vote for the women of Illinois. They finally succeeded in 1913. The state legislature approved a limited ballot for women that included voting for electors in presidential elections. This expansion of the rights of Illinios women made a significant impact on the national movement. Soon after, in 1920, full women's suffrage became a reality across the nation.
Click on the Evanstonian's names to the right to learn more about the role they played in the fight for women's suffrage at the state and national level.
Before the 19th amendment, many American women already had some opportunities to vote in certain elections, thanks to the efforts of suffragists. In some cases, these voting victories were more symbolic than actually practical. Opinions were divided--some people thought that accepting partial voting rights was settling, and would slow down progress towards full suffrage. However, others saw partial voting rights as steps in the direction of full suffrage, and hoped that opportunities to vote would encourage women to become more involved in the election process, as well as prove that women could be responsible voters.