New York was home to the first-ever Women's Rights Convention, held in Seneca Falls, on July 19 and 20, 1848 and organized by Lucretia Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Sixty-nine years later, on Nov. 6, 1917, women in New York State won the right to vote.
"As someone who benefitted greatly from the suffragists' efforts, I am proud that OGS is highlighting their accomplishments in these special tours and exhibits," Commissioner RoAnn Destito said. "I encourage everyone to take the time and learn about New York's place in history as the birthplace of the women's rights movement and as one of the first states where women were granted the right to vote."
New York State is where the first Women's Rights Convention was held in Seneca Falls in 1848 and where women won the right to vote in 1917, three years before the 19th amendment was ratified. This special one-hour tour will explore the connections between the Capitol and the historic fight for suffrage. It will feature an exhibit of artifacts selected to showcase the suffragists' journey from earliest ambition to success. The tours also coincide with suffrage exhibits and events at the New York State Museum and the Albany Institute of History and Art.
As part of New York's recognition of Women's History Month, a number of exhibits will be available for public viewing in both the Empire State Plaza and the New York State Capitol Building. The exhibit "Women's Suffrage in New York State," located in the Capitol corridor which connects the state house to the Empire State Plaza, will include imagery of pro- and anti-suffrage propaganda with historic photographs of the women who organized and marched until the vote was won. The exhibition offers a glimpse of this historic struggle and groundbreaking victory for women's rights.
The exhibit, "New York State Women's Suffrage 1917 - 2017 | The Fight for the Vote and the March for Full Equality," is located in the East Gallery on the second floor of the Capitol and traces the almost 70-year struggle for the vote. The exhibit highlights the lives of 12 influential Suffragists and the critical role they played in securing the vote by African Americans and working women. This month-long exhibit features the "Spirit of 1776" wooden suffrage wagon in which a Long Island Suffragist and her eight-year-old daughter traveled throughout Long Island and Manhattan during the summer of 1913 to spread the importance of votes for women, a 1917 banner carried by Suffragists, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton's 1854 address to the New York State Legislature.