Civil Rights: the Women’s Rights Movement

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Even though called a citizen of a free country, women had no rights during the 19th century United States. They were looked down as intellectually and physically unequal to men. They had no legal rights and were made slaves in their houses. They didn’t have the right to own property, maintain their wages, sign a contract or vote. They had to fight a long battle to earn the right to vote. That outcome led to the women’s rights movement. The women’s right movement began in 1848, when the first women’s rights convention was held in Seneca Falls, New York. It was held by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott. There were 300 people who attended the meeting. They passed along ideas that called for the abolition of legal, economic, and social discrimation against women. The ranks of women’s rights activists grew until emancipation changed the face of the woman’s rights movement forever. In the 20th century leadership of the movement passed to two organizations. The first organization was the National American Woman Suffrage Association. It was under the leadership of Carrie Chapman. The NAWSA convinced President Wilson and the Congress to pass woman suffrage Constitutional Amendment. The second organization was the National Woman’s Party. It was under the leadership of Alice Paul. In order to convince President Wilson and Congress to pass a woman suffrage movement, they had to undertake radical actions. In 1920, due to the combine efforts of the NAWSA and the NWP the 19th Amendment was ratified. It gave women the right to vote. This victory was considered the greatest achievement by women in the Progressive Era. It was the largest extension of democratic voting rights in our nation’s history. Work Cited 1. 2. O’Connor, Karen; Sabato J., Larry; Yanus B,

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