Women Homesteaders and Suffrage

Homestead National Historical Park celebrated the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th amendment in 2020 by remembering women who homesteaded and their profound impact on the success of suffrage ideas.

 
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Duration:
16 minutes, 8 seconds

The Homestead Act of 1862 gave single women a pathway to landownership. Homesteading women created an atmosphere where ideas about women’s rights could flourish. Historians have long acknowledged that the Homestead Act of 1862, as one of the most substantial and influential acts ever passed by Congress. This new research shows how women homesteaders impacted the women's suffrage movement.

 

"Planted in the Soil"

Historian Jonathan Fairchild’s research illustrates that women homesteaders were not just supporting figures in this monumental movement but central figures that impacted major developments like the eventual realization of women's rights to vote.

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Women gathered outside of the Woman Suffrage Headquarters in Ohio

Women's Access to the Vote Across the US

A series of articles with a comprehensive history of women's suffrage and the 19th Amendment across America.

Suffragist holds torch over Western states where women can vote beckoning the struggling women in Ea

Women Homesteaders

Explore the stories of women homesteaders across the United States.

Women watching another woman sew a star on a National Women's Party flag.

19th Amendment by State

Explore the state histories of the ratification of the 19th Amendment and women's right to vote.

 
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Duration:
38 minutes, 13 seconds

Homestead Historian, Jonathan Fairchild, presents his research on the ways that women homesteaders and the Homestead Act helped lead the way to women’s suffrage. More than 100,000 women received land in their own name under the Homestead Act, paying taxes on their land – leading many to raise the cry “no taxation without representation!” as they pushed for the vote. When the 19th Amendment was ratified on August 18th, 1920, it was women homesteaders and the Homestead Act of 1862 that led the way.

 

Suffrage Activist Homesteaders

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    Last updated: December 13, 2021

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