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The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues through education and advocacy
LWVNV 2019 State Convention
The League of Women Voters of Nevada 2019 Convention is scheduled for July 20, 2019, 10:30 am to 2 pm, in Tonopah, Nevada.  If you would like to attend, please click on this Eventbrite link to RSVP: https://lwvn2019convention.eventbrite.com
We will be sending an agenda and other documents closer to July 20th.  In general, we elect a new board and review information from LWVUS.  There are often carpooling opportunities.

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Women’s Suffrage

Suffrage from Latin “suffragium” meaning “the right to vote”


1776

Abigail Adams wrote to her husband at the Continental Congress:


“I long to hear that you have declared on independency. And, by the way, in the new code of laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make, I desire you would remember the ladies and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put unlimited power into the hands of the husbands. Remember all men would be tyrants if they could. If particular care and attention is not paid to the ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation.”


Fast Forward to 1869 in Nevada


Curtis Hillyer of Storey County proposed an amendment to the Nevada constitution saying, “Politics is corrupt and women have been a civilizing and moralizing influence” so should be able to vote. It passed both houses, but it needed to pass a second time. It failed in 1870.


In 1910, the Nevada Equal Franchise Society was co-founded by Jeanne Weir, a history professor from the university who was also the founder of the Nevada Historical Society, and Felice Cohn, a lawyer who was born in Carson City. They were in favor of less militant methods than Anne Martin who was one of 110 women arrested in England for advocating for Women’s rights. Another woman lawyer in Goldfield who was a Vice-President of the Equal Franchise Society wrote and distributed a pamphlet called “Women Under Nevada Laws”. An amendment was again proposed in Nevada. Operators of casinos and saloons were expected to vote “no” because they believed that women, being the moral arbiters of society, might vote against their businesses. Some leading Nevadans opposed the amendment including George Wingfield in Goldfield. He said if Nevada approved women’s suffrage, he would close his mines and his businesses and leave the state. After successful lobbying by women from the national organization like Anne Howard Shaw and Jane Addams who went on statewide speaking tours, the legislature passed the amendment for women’s right to vote in 1911 and in 1913 with wide support including democratic U.S. Senator Francis Newlands and republican Governor Tasker Oddie. The people of the state had to vote on it in 1914 and it passed! 10,936 to 7,258. (The vote in Las Vegas was 296 to 153.) Women had the right to vote in Nevada in 1914! A poem appeared in the Nye county newspaper entitled “Where You Goin’, George?” soon after it passes.


After the 19th Amendment passed Congress in 1919 and was being ratified by the states, Carrie Chapman Catt called a convention of the National American Women’s Suffrage Association. She wanted to rename the organization the League of Women Voters because “a non-partisan civic organization could provide the education and the experience the public needed to assure the success of democracy.” It was called a League because it meant to unite all the existing organizations of women who believed in the same principles. The League would not be formed to “lure women from partisanship, but to combine them in an effort for legislation which would protect the coming movement, which we cannot foretell, from suffering the untoward conditions which have hindered for so long the coming of equal suffrage.”

 

In its first year, the new League program had 69 issues from child welfare and education to women in gainful occupations and public health.


Now we are about to celebrate 100 years of our right to vote. Molly Walt at the Nevada Commission for Women is organizing and encouraging celebrations all over the state. There will be a huge parade in Henderson next May which the League is expected to walk in and the Nevada Day Committee is looking at having Women’s Suffrage being the theme of the Nevada Day Parade (or at least a major presence including maybe the grand Marshall being our state president) but don’t hold your breath. She is also helping to get historical markers regarding women in Nevada who helped with the suffrage effort, including our own Felice Cohn. Also, a suffrage license plate is being designed.


As an aside, Molly Walt wants to let everyone here know that she wants as many women as possible to apply for state and local boards and commissions. The openings are on the Governor’s website.

Mary Liveratti and Nancy Scott presented the LWV Good Governance Award to Governor Brian Sandoval on behalf of the LWV of NV. LWVNV chose Governor Sandoval for the award for his leadership during the 2015 Legislative session, especially in improving education in the State of Nevada and providing sustainable funding for education.
Confused about political charges and other issues? Here are some links to some of the better fact-checking web sites:



https://www.snopes.com/