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History Buffs Celebrate Women's Right To Vote Centennial At Arizona Capitol Museum

Published: Sunday, February 16, 2020 - 12:37pm
Library of Congress
Suffragette and former Arizona Sen. Frances Willard Munds.

Nearly 100 years ago, a decades-long effort to get women the right to vote became a reality.

And for Arizona Statehood Day on Friday, government officials and historical enthusiasts gathered at the state Capitol Museum and wore period clothing for an exhibit celebrating women’s suffrage.

Debbie Hanson dressed as Arizona suffragist and former lawmaker Frances Munds who was one of the first women elected to the state Legislature. "Most people have no idea just how extraordinary their effort was. It took them 72 years to accomplish this and the whole time they were cobbled and hindered by not even having the vote," she said. 

Secretary of State Katie Hobbs also donned period clothing and participated in the ribbon-cutting ceremony commemorating the exhibit and historic legislation.

The 19th Amendment—giving women the right to vote—was ratified Aug. 18, 1920.

Last year, scholars from Arizona State University relaunched The Revolution — an iconic newspaper championing women's suffrage created by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony. It was reimagined by Rosemarie Dombroski, Phoenix poet laureate, and historian Pamela Stewart as well as writers and artists. 

Both Dombroski and Stewart appeared on the Season 2 opener of "Word," a KJZZ podcast about the literary arts in the state and the region, to discuss why revivifying the spirit of the publication online felt necessary in the 21st century.