In 1922 six women were elected to the Ohio legislature, two years after demanding the right to vote. 89 years later, Ohio ranks a pathetic 41st among the states for women's representation in Government, with only 17% of our statewide elected officials being women. The national average hovers precariously at 22%, a number that dropped from a mere 24% in recent years.
In honor of the brave Ohio Suffragettes who risked jail and ridicule for the right to vote and run for elected office, The Capital Square Review and Advisory board raised $264,000 to dedicate The Ladies Gallery as a permanent exhibition in The Ohio Statehouse. The ceremony featured comments by Jo Ann Davidson, the first female speaker of the Ohio House, as well as a re-creation of a famous July 30, 1914, photo taken when more than 5,000 suffragettes rallied at the Statehouse for the right to vote.
Ohio ratified the 19th Amendment on June 16, 1919, 12 days after Congress sent the proposal to the states. Final ratification took another year nationally, however, and women got the right to vote in 1920. It took two years for them to reach state government.
Gregg Dodd, spokesman for the Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board, said "The enduring goal is to inform and inspire all who visit -- especially young women and girls -- to take an active role in democracy."
The display includes an interactive kiosk, artifacts, photos, banners and other items that tell the story of the first women legislators and the history of the suffrage movement in Ohio.
For more information visit www.ohiostatehouse.org.
It was a great-grand day. Enjoy the photos!
Many great women leaders from both parties were there, standing united. Ahhh, a refreshing sight indeed.
But the little woman who stole the show was clearly Miss Tristen Davis, a child of only tender years, who got up on a box in order to be tall enough to reach the microphone and read the 19th amendment. She was adorable.