Casting a Historic Vote: Suffrage in Illinois

The course of justice rarely runs smooth, and the path to women's suffrage in Illinois was no exception. Explore the trail with anthropologist Jeanne Schultz Angel in a virtual event at 6:30 p.m. on October 19, hosted by Chillicothe Public Library and produced in part by Illinois Humanities Road Scholars Speakers Bureau.

Prior to 1920, women were denied the vote in the majority of elections in the United States. The struggle for enfranchisement began with the birth of our nation and was strategized differently in our local, state, and federal elections. Despite what people today believe to be a straightforward goal, the path to women's suffrage was infused with sexism and racism and triggered a fear of feminism. While wealthy women advocates played a vital role in the suffrage movement, they were not the only ones seeking enfranchisement. From attorney Ellen Martin, the first woman to vote in Illinois, to Ida B. Wells, who did not let racism stop her voice, women's suffrage has been a battle hard fought by a diverse group of activists in Illinois.

Presenter Jeanne Schultz Angel holds degrees in anthropology and history through Illinois State University. She has worked as the Executive Director of the Lombard Historical Society and Executive Director of the Illinois Association of Museums. Currently, she is the Executive Director of the Nineteenth Century Charitable Association in Oak Park, Illinois.

"Casting a Historic Vote: Suffrage in Illinois" will take place on Monday, October 19 at 6:30 p.m. Attend this live Zoom event at (passcode 571758). For more information, please visit or call Chillicothe Public Library at 309-274-2719.

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About Illinois Humanities

Illinois Humanities strengthens the social, political, and economic fabric of Illinois through constructive conversation and community engagement. Founded in 1974 as the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, Illinois Humanities is the only statewide proponent of the public humanities in Illinois. Through public programs, education and training, and grantmaking, we connect Illinoisans who might not otherwise encounter one another.

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