Election day is coming up on Tuesday, April 7 – Did you know that the Junior League was an instrumental contributor to the Women’s Suffrage Movement? In 1914, the Junior League of St Louis organized with a mission combining advocacy with service, and in particular focused on women’s suffrage as a method to intelligently impact change improving the lives of women and children. When the City of St Louis hosted the Democratic National Convention in 1916, the Junior League knew it wanted to organize something. However, instead of hunger strikes and sit downs used elsewhere, the JLSL and the Equal Suffrage League organized a “walkless, talkless parade” – 7,000 women dressed in white wearing yellow sashes and carrying yellow parasols lined the route delegates had to pass to reach the convention hall. As a result, the Democrats voted to include a plank for women’s suffrage, the first time a national party had declared support for suffrage. Both political parties formally endorsed women’s suffrage before the end of 1916. The 19th Amendment guaranteeing a woman’s right to vote passed Congress in June 1919, and was ratified by the states in August 1920.
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