On February 27, 1922, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously and momentously upheld the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. (Leser v. Garnett)
Despite the passage of the amendment in 1920 and the decades-long contributions of Black women to achieve suffrage, poll taxes, local laws and other restrictions continued to block women of color from voting. Black men and women also faced intimidation and often violent opposition at the polls or when attempting to register to vote. It would take more than 40 years for all women to achieve voting equality.
The ruling reaffirmed the country’s commitment both to women’s rights and to efforts to improve access to the ballot box. It was a win not just for women, but for democracy at large.
Fittingly, this major milestone in women’s history is the perfect kick-off for Women’s History Month, which begins March 1st.