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Portsmouth Historical Society to celebrate women’s first vote

Local suffrage movement topic of Oct. 14 lecture

Posted 10/6/20

PORTSMOUTH — As the country celebrates the 100th anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, join the Portsmouth Historical Society next week to learn how local …

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Portsmouth Historical Society to celebrate women’s first vote

Local suffrage movement topic of Oct. 14 lecture

Posted

PORTSMOUTH — As the country celebrates the 100th anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, join the Portsmouth Historical Society next week to learn how local women fought for the vote, as well as the process they took in preparing for their first trip to the ballot box.

The presentation will be held from 6:30-7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 14, in the second floor of the museum building, 870 East Main Road (corner of Union Street). This is a free event, however donations to the Society are always appreciated. 

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the event is limited to 50 attendees; reserve your space by e-mailing PHSLectureRSVP@portsmouthhistorical.org. Attendees are ask to bring a mask.

Gloria Schmidt will share her research on some of the 40 women she has identified as part of the suffrage movement. 

Portsmouth women began to formally organize as the Newport County Woman Suffrage League in 1907. The original group was gathered from friends and neighbors in the Bristol Ferry neighborhood. Cora Mitchel was the founder and first president, and later Maud Howe Elliott (the daughter of Julia Ward Howe) took the lead. The organization spread throughout Newport County.

The lecture will focus on the Portsmouth women involved — who were they and how did they contribute to the Portsmouth community? After the vote was won, how did the town prepare them for their first vote? 

The Portsmouth Historical Society is a volunteer nonprofit organization, formed in 1940, dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of Portsmouth’s history.

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