Until 100 years ago, women did not have the right to vote in New York State. That changed on November 6, 1917, when New Yorkers voted to give women the ballot. The Adirondack History Museum is marking the occasion with “Adirondack Suffragists: 100 Years of Votes for Women,” a multimedia exhibit highlighting the national, state and regional aspects of the movement.
Though preceded by many western states in state-level action, New York was nonetheless a major national battleground in the fight for women’s rights in general and in the struggle for the passage of a national woman’s suffrage amendment – one finally ratified in 1920 as the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
Beginning in 1848 with the Woman’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, and continuing well into the early 20th century, New York women such as Inez Milholland of Lewis, led the national “Votes for Women” movement. Along with artifacts and historical interpretation, the exhibit contains silent films and music of the suffrage movement, a screening of the documentary Inez Milholland: Forward Into Light, and several interactive elements, including a chance to dress up in a suffrage sash for a photograph, and to “cast a ballot” on the 1917 suffrage amendment.
A Thursday evening lecture kicks off the museum’s suffrage programming for the season. “Votes for Women!” will be held on June 22 as the first presentation in the 2017 lecture series. Presented by Local Historian Margaret Bartley and Zahavi, the exhibit planners, the multimedia lecture will focus on the passage of suffrage within New York State. There will be a reception at 6 pm, and the lecture will begin at 7 pm. The lecture is $8 for nonmembers.
As part of its suffrage programming, the museum will host a summer film series, with one film showing each month from June through September. The Museum will screen One Woman, One Vote on June 29, Suffragettes in the Silent Cinema on July 30, Iron Jawed Angels on August 17 and Suffragette on September 14. All films begin at 7 pm. Admission is free, but donations are accepted.
The museum is opened Tuesdays-Saturdays 10 am to 4 pm, and Sundays from noon to 4 pm. Admission is $5 for adults, $4 for seniors, and $2 for students. For more information, contact the museum at (518) 873-6466, [email protected], or visit the Museum’s website.
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Photo: Ava Roberts of Peru visits the Adirondack History Museum’s new exhibit, “Adirondack Suffragists: 100 Years of Votes for Women,” provided by the Adirondack History Museum.