Monday, March 4, 2013

Women's Suffrage: Connect Kids to the Past with Contemporary Events

Washington Celebrates 100th Anniversary of Women's Suffrage Parade

Inez Milholland in the 1913 Parade.
Photograph (c) Library of Congress.
Yesterday participants marched in Washington, DC to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the women's suffrage parade in the tradition of suffragettes like Inez Milholland, who at age 27, paraded on horseback in flowing white robes to support the right of women to vote--an image that has become iconic of the 1913 march. Yesterday's march retraced the original 5,000-person march down Pennsylvania Avenue and focused on women’s equality.

Anniversaries of critical historical events are an ideal time to connect young people to the past. Why not share the story of Inez Miholland and other suffragettes who worked so hard to gain the vote for women with the young people in your life this week? You can read about Inez in the Washington Post here, as well as in the Library of Congress American Memory website article "Marching for the Vote: Remembering the Woman Suffrage Parade of 1913." 

Another excellent resource for digging into the past is the NCBLA's award-winning, interdisciplinary anthology Our White House: Looking In, Looking Out (Candlewick Press). Included among the poetry, prose, and art selections is an imaginative piece titled “Eyewitness to History,” in which author Stephanie S. Tolan imagines a dialogue between a journalist and suffragists who are picketing outside the White House in 1917 demanding the right to vote. The journalist is working for a program that “travels through time to let you witness the major events of the past.” Emily Arnold McCully's coordinating illustration is featured here.

And on the companion website, you can share the history of voting rights in America using the information in "Who Gets to Vote?"