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Did American women [or the women of your state] deserve the right to vote in the early 20th century?

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Social Studies +2 Age Levels Middle School (13 to 15 years old), High School (16 to 18 years old)

Who had the right to vote in the US [or your state] by the early 20th century?; What roles did women play in society at this time?; Who supported and opposed women's suffrage and why?

Though the answer to this compelling question might feel obvious to 21st century Americans, the issue was far from settled at the time. This dichotomy adds to its intellectual heft and engages students' inherent interest in fairness, discrimination, and rights. (It also connects to ongoing debates about the franchise and who is entitled to it.) The supporting questions invite students to learn more about voting in the time period, the changing roles played by women, and the people who might have supported or opposed women's political equality, all of which help scaffold students' investigations into the ideas and issues behind this compelling question.


Anti-Woman Suffrage Postcard

National Museum of American History

Anti-Woman Suffrage Figurine

National Museum of American History

Newspaper clipping: Anti-Suffrage demonstration, 1917

National Museum of American History

Suffragists: From campaigns to currency

National Museum of American History