As a War Measure, poster by National Woman Suffrage Publishing Company, Inc., ca. 1918
U.S. entry into World War I prompted women’s suffrage groups to initiate new strategies for gaining public support for the vote for women. This poster, created by one of the country’s largest pro-suffrage groups, linked women’s substantial wartime service to the expectation that women should get the vote in exchange for their contributions.
Suffrage Ephemera Collection, Special Collections Department, Bryn Mawr College Library
Women and the Vote
Thousands of women supported the war effort during World War I, from defense industry workers to Red Cross volunteers. Concurrently, women’s rights activists pressed Congress for the right to vote, highlighting women’s patriotism and service during wartime. Congress approved a resolution in 1919 proposing a Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution to grant women suffrage. Following the amendment’s ratification in 1920, women could legally vote in national elections for the first time, though many were still limited in exercising the vote by state laws based on race.
Not only as workers but as voters, the war has called women over the top.
Harriot Stanton Blatch, Mobilizing Woman-Power, 1918