U.S. Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby certifies the 19th Amendment on August 26, 1920, giving women the Constitutional right to vote. First proposed in Congress in 1878, the amendment did not pass the House and Senate until 1919. It takes another fifteen months before it is ratified by three-fourths of the states (thirty-six in total at the time) and finally becomes law in 1920. Read more about it!
The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.
The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.
|1890||Wyoming enters the union with its suffrage laws intact, becoming the first state to allow women to vote.|
|1916||Jeannette Rankin is elected as a Representative for Montana, becoming the first woman to serve in the U.S. Congress.|
|1917||Women picketing for suffrage in front of the White House are arrested in August and November. Some are sent to prison.|
|1918||The House of Representatives passes a resolution for a woman suffrage amendment. The resolution is defeated in the Senate.|
|1919||The Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which gives women the right to vote, is adopted by a joint resolution in Congress.|
|August 26, 1920||After Tennessee becomes the thirty-sixth state to ratify the 19th Amendment, the Amendment is officially adopted and women are given the right to vote.|