At 3:20 pm on Monday, March 3, 1913, 5,000 marchers, who had descended on Washington, DC in a public testament to their determination to secure the vote for women, began their march down Pennsylvania Avenue. Their destination: The White House. In the lead was lawyer and outspoken suffragist Inez Millholland, dressed in a long flowing white cape and sitting atop her horse, “Grey Dawn.”
One hundred years later, on Sunday March 3, 2013, some 5,000 marchers that included women from all over the US, began that same journey down Pennsylvania Avenue in honor of the courageous suffragists who helped secure the rights we enjoy today.
The parade, organized by the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority in honor of the original 22 founders who marched in the 1913 parade, featured a cross-section of women from Alaska and Ohio to England and Finland. Members, staff and friends of The National Women’s History Museum marched proudly down Penn. Ave, carrying the memories of the suffragists who stood in the same place a century before and fought their way through a surging mob of men who heckled and attacked them.
The parade began at 9am with speeches from Delta Sorority leaders and from NWHM President & CEO, Joan Wages. Delta sisters from all across the US led the parade, which ended at the National Monument.
Although it would take another seven years for American women to secure the vote, the 1913 Suffrage parade was a turning point in the movement largely due to the coverage of the violence that broke out. Americans who had little exposure to the movement or only a marginal interest were suddenly galvanized by images and accounts of the abuse that the peaceful marchers endured.
NWHM would like to thank everyone who came out in the cold on Sunday, March 3rd to participate in the parade and support the Museum!
Watch this video to learn more about the 1913 Suffrage parade in Washington, DC.