Certified as part of the U.S. Constitution on August 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment was the result of decades of work by women—and men!—across the country who fought for change. Although the amendment didn’t guarantee the vote for all women in the US, this was a benchmark moment for American democracy and an important milestone in women’s equality and cultural change, leading to more opportunities for women to be involved in all aspects of society.
What is the 19th Amendment?
The 19th Amendment of the US Constitution protects women’s right to vote by prohibiting the state and federal governments from denying citizens from voting based on sex. But there was more work to be done to ensure that all American women—and men—had and could truly exercise the right to vote. As our nation commemorates the centennial, explore the complex history involving Americans of all backgrounds who fought for and against ratifying the amendment and applying the law in reality.
The 19th Amendment
Learn more about the history of the 19th Amendment and find resources, including articles, education tools, timelines, maps, and more.
A Crash Course
Brush up on your 19th Amendment knowledge with a brief overview of its history, key players, and legacy.
Still Denied the Vote
Even after the ratification of the 19th Amendment, many American women were still unable to cast a ballot.
19th Amendment Podcasts
The Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commission, National Park Service, and public media organization PRX are partnering to bring you two new history-driven podcasts inspired by the courageous suffragists who worked to secure the right to vote for American women. Listen to the two-episode series —The Magic Sash for young audiences and And Nothing Less for teen and adult audiences—starting August 5, 2020.
Introduce kids to the history and conversations about the importance of the 19th Amendment and women's equality with programs, games, and lesson plans for all ages. Find more 19th Amendment kids activities and see what is new for this year!
Follow the social media channels of parks, National Park Service programs, and partners to learn more about the 19th Amendment and engage in conservations looking beyond its passing. Share your own stories or inspirations, including moments in history or people in your life, using #BeyondThe19th and #FindYourPark / #EncuentraTuParque.
Forward Into Light Social Media Event
On August 26, 2020, exactly 100 years after the 19th Amendment became a part of the U.S. Constitution, the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commission is inviting buildings and landmarks across the country—and social media channels—to light up in purple and gold. A few national parks such as Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument will illuminate a park structure, while many other parks will post special purple and gold photos on their social media channels. Find these images on social media using #ForwardIntoLight and #NPS19th.
Only four years before the 19th Amendment became law, the National Park Service was created on August 25, 1916. Despite culturally imposed limitations, women have played an important role in the preservation, understanding, and stewardship of national parks since the early days of the National Park Service. Learn more about women who were trail blazers for parks throughout the 20th century.
Last updated: August 27, 2020