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Sep 2, 2009

THANK YOU ALICE PAUL

I watched a movie the other night that I found so disturbing yet exhilarating. It was called Iron Jawed Angels and starred Hilary Swank.

I know you have heard of Susan B. Anthony but have you heard of Alice Paul?
Hilary played the lead character of Alice Paul. For those of you who have never heard of her you owe her a debt of thanks. It was the work of her and others like her who fought almost to the death for the right to vote for women. Alice Paul was born in 1885 to a Quaker family in New Jersey. The Hicksite Quakers believed in equality for the genders and working for the betterment of society. Education for both sexes was important.

Alice's mother, Tacie, took her daughter to meetings of the National American Woman Suffrage Association. Her mother made a big impact on Alice and she quoted her mother's saying "When you put your hand to the plough, you can't put it down until you get to the end of the row."

Alice had graduated first in her class at a Hicksite school in New Jersey. She then went on to Swarthmore College. Her grandfather Judge William Parry was one of the founders of the co-ed school back in 1864. She had quite a rough time fighting for us eventually ending up in prison with many of her like minded cohorts. She was part of a hunger strike that led to the tortuous force feeding by shoving tubes down their throats and pouring in raw eggs.

President Wilson backed down in 1917 and labeled it a war measure announcing how much the women helped the country during war. Two years later the 19th Amendment was passed by Senate and went to ratification.

The deciding vote in 1920 was cast by the youngest memeber of the Tennessee assembly who was ready to vote against the women when he received a telegram from his mother advising him otherwise.

Womens Equality day was on August 26th. I am sorry I missed it but better late than never. Just ask Alice Paul. 1885-1977
For more information and history on Alice Paul go to the website here.

4 comments:

A Stitch In Thyme said...

When I first this story years ago I immediately thought how easy we have it to some degree. What a powerful woman she was.

Thank you for sharing.
Tammy

A Stitch In Thyme said...

By the By, I just read your favorite movies list and I was happily surprised. I love all of those movies!! But you must add benny & june for me too!

Good music too.

Lou said...

I get so inspired reading about the womens suffrage movement, they were such strong and motivated women. Did you know that NZ was the first country to give women the vote in 1893?

Joanne said...

Lou I knew that - one of NZ's many proud moments.

Lori we take so much for granted -- did I show my great grand-mom's Suffragette pin when we met? Its tiny but feels powerful when I touch it.

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