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How We Remember Women's Suffrage

Part of the Smithsonian American Women’s History Initiative

Evening Program

Evening Lecture/Seminar

Thursday, August 13, 2020 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET
Code: 1L0339
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Display case from the exhibition Creating Icons: How We Remember Woman Suffrage (Amercian History Museum)


  • This program is part of our Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.
  • Platform: Zoom
  • Online registration is required.
  • For multiple registrations, you will be asked to supply individual names and email addresses.

Who are the iconic figures of the women’s suffrage movement? The tale of the decades-long crusade for the vote that ended in the ratification of the 19th Amendment on August 18, 1920, inspired generations of women to fight for their rights—and still does. Women of all classes and races across the United States were part of the movement, but most of them are missing from its history.

How did Susan B. Anthony become the iconic figure of the suffrage movement? As we mark the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage, Lisa Kathleen Graddy explores how a timely donation to the Smithsonian helped cement Anthony in the public imagination. She also examines who was left out of the movement’s story, how their exclusion still haunts the struggle for women’s rights, and how we together decide who are its icons.

Graddy is a curator of political history at American History Museum. Her exhibitions include the “A Vote, A Voice” section of American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith and Creating Icons: How We Remember Woman Suffrage.

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Smithsonian Connections

In a interview, historian Kate Clarke Lemay, curator of the Portrait Gallery’s exhibition Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence, discuses a number of often-overlooked African-American women activists and how photographic portraits proved to be a crucial element in defining their identity as legitimate leaders within the women’s rights movement.

American Women's History Initiative

This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.