National Votes for Women Trail adds new Alabama markers

Alabama News

In this September 1916 file photo, demonstrators hold a rally for women’s suffrage in New York. The Seneca Falls convention in 1848 is widely viewed as the launch of the women’s suffrage movement, yet women didn’t gain the right to vote until ratification of the 19th Amendment in 1920. (AP Photo/File)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WIAT) — On Wednesday, the Alabama Women’s Suffrage Centennial Committee announced the dedication of new historical markers for the National Votes for Women Trail in locations across the state.

In 2019, the Alabama Department of Archives and History formed the Alabama Women’s Suffrage Centennial Committee in partnership with the Alabama State Bar and the League of Women Voters of Alabama coordinated the state’s commemoration of the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment.

As part of their efforts, the AWSCC identified and nominated six Alabama sites for inclusion in the National Votes for Women’s Trail, a national trail of landmarks that commemorates the women, events and places involved in the fight for women’s suffrage. The NVWT was created by the William G. Pomeroy Foundation and the National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites and spans all 50 states.

There will be markers located in Huntsville, Decatur, Birmingham, Selma, Tuskegee, and Mobile. The first marker will be dedicated in Huntsville May 19 at 1 p.m. by the Historic Huntsville Foundation at the Greene Street YMCA. In 1912, the Huntsville Equal Suffrage Association re-formed at this location, and in 1914, the Alabama Equal Suffrage Association held its annual convention at the YMCA. The HHF has identified three additional suffrage sites and plans to debut additional historical markers in 2021.

On June 4, the city of Decatur and local historian and AWSCC member Peggy Towns will dedicate the second NVWT marker at the site of the Old Echols Opera House on the corner of Bank and Vine Streets. In 1895, national suffrage leaders Susan B. Anthony and Carrie Chapman Catt visited Decatur and spoke at this site. The marker also commemorates Decatur’s place in the early suffrage movement.

The public is invited to attend both of these events. The markers for other sites in the state will be dedicated later this year.

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