Pickaway Library Features 100th Year Women's Suffrage Movement Exhibit

In September, the Pickaway County Library is offering a virtual presentation to celebrate the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in the United States. 

“From Madam Satan to Madam Speaker: 150 years of Ohio Women Running for Public Office” highlights the ups and downs of women in their quest for voting rights. Presented by Barbara Palmer, professor of political science at Baldwin Wallace University and executive director of the Center for Women and Politics of Ohio, the presentation is in two parts that can be listened to as podcasts or viewed for graphics and historical photos. 

Parts 1 and 2 will be available through the month of September from the library’s online calendar orhttps://tinyurl.com/MadamSpeaker. These presentations are supported by a grant from Ohio Humanities. 

Palmer is a dynamic speaker with a passion for the subject matter. She features Victoria Woodhull, a native Ohioan called “Madam Satan” in the media for her controversial stance on women’s equality. Woodhull was the first woman to run for President in 1872 - nearly 50 years before the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution gave women the right to vote. Part 1 covers the history of women's suffrage through 1920 and is 18 minutes in length.

In Part 2, Palmer covers 1920 to 2020 and discusses the early success of female candidates, including Florence Allen, an Ohioan who in 1922 was the first woman to ever be elected to any state high court. It would take until 1995, however, for Jo Ann Davidson to become Ohio’s first — and so far, only — female Speaker of the Ohio House. While Ohio can celebrate many “famous firsts,” the history of women running for public office is one of fits and starts, but full of inspiring stories. Part 2 is 25 minutes in length. 

Additional resources recommended by Dr. Palmer include The Center for Women and Politics of Ohio and The Center for American Women and Politics. 

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