Rights for Women: The Suffrage Movement and Its Leaders

Aftermath of Winning the Vote

After the passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920, the women’s movement transitioned into a new phase. Already in 1919, Carrie Chapman Catt had moved to convert the NAWSA into the League of Women Voters. In 1920, after the passage of the 19th Amendment, the NAWSA became the League of Women Voters (LWV), which worked within the traditional political system to make women’s vote effective. Alice Paul and the National Woman’s Party pursued a separate strategy by introducing the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) to the Constitution, which sought to make illegal any discrimination on the basis of sex.

By these and other means, the fight to politically, economically, and socially empower women would go on. It was not until the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s that black women in the South would be able to exercise their right to vote. However, by all accounts, the passage of the 19th Amendment was a major step on the road towards full citizenship and equality for all American women.


"Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex."  - the Equal Rights Amendment


League of Women Voters
Poster from the 1920s from the League of Women Voters, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division


1) Cooney Jr., Robert PJ. Winning the Vote: The Triumph of the American Woman Suffrage Movement. American Graphic, 2005.
2) DuBois, Ellen Carol. Woman Suffrage and Women’s Rights. New York University Press, 1998.
3) Flexner, Eleanor. Century of Struggle. Atheneum, 1968.
4) Frost, Elizabeth and Kathryn Cullen-DuPont. Women’s Suffrage in America: An Eyewitness History. Facts on File, 1992.
5) Keyssar, Alexander. The Right to Vote: The Contested History of Democracy in the United States. Basic Books, 2001.
6) Mayo, Edith P. “Introduction.” Jailed for Freedom: American Women Win the Vote. Doris Stevens. Carol O’Hare, editor. New Sage Press, 1995.
7) Terborg-Penn, Rosalyn. African American Women in the Struggle for the Vote, 1850-1920. Indiana University Press, 1998.


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