August 26th is an Observance with Plenty of Photos and Music

This photo of a woman voting for the first time in the United States looks almost normal, except for the fact the outcome represents a 72-year struggle by women. Individuals like founding mothers Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who started the ball rolling in 1848 at Seneca Falls, New York, died before the vote was realized for women in 1920.

Women’s Equality Day on August 26th each year is an opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the enormous accomplishment of women winning the vote. And an ample supply of photos and music is available as resources for those planning community and organizational events, as well as teaching this important part of history in the school setting.

The Library of Congress photo collection has numerous images of high quality like this one. Visit the Library of Congress photographic collection and type “woman’s suffrage” into the search engine. The availability of images is due, in part, to the recognition of the suffragists themselves that they had a responsibility to document their own movement.

Musician and historian Gerri Gribi has a particular fondness for the woman’s suffrage movement. Gribi’s web site has free music downloads and considerable information about Women’s Equality Day. One of her downloads is of L. May Wheeler’s song, “Oh Dear, What Can the Matter Be?” Gribi especially enjoys this satiric song used in the suffrage movement because it has a few surprises. She comments on the song in a three-minute podcast. Another podcast (two minutes) has Gribi speaking about songs used in the suffrage movement in general.

The National Women’s History Project has a downloadable brochure for Women’s Equality Day, which is another example of the many resources available on the internet, whether you’re a school history teacher, someone passionate about American history, or you’re a representative of an organization planning a fundraiser to coincide with Women’s Equality Day.

August 26th may not be as well known as Labor Day, but awareness of the observance designated by Congress will have increasing recognition as 2020, the 100th anniversary of women voting in the United States, draws closer.

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