Fighting for Equality By Madeline Ward, Logan Faulkner, and Grace Nast

Political Equality: Women's Suffrage

  • women's suffrage movement in full swing
  • people like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton advocated for equal rights for white women since the 1840s with the Seneca Falls Convention
  • established the National American Women Suffrage Association, or NAWSA
  • Wyoming became first state to grant women voting rights in 1869
  • by 1900, some states allowed women to vote locally but not nationally

Social Equality: Evolving Gender Roles

  • more women joined the workforce post-Civil War
  • young, single women were the majority of female workers; married women stayed home
  • primary role was still in the home, taking care of children and managing the household
  • had fewer children because families moved to cities; more children meant more labor on farms

Economic Equality: Working Women

  • most states allowed women to own property even after marriage
  • by 1900, 1 in 5 women were working, but only 5% were married
  • still widely believed that if a family could afford it, women should stay home
  • many working class families depended on every able-bodied member working

Notable Figures

  • Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton: helped found the NAWSA and advocated for women's suffrage during the second half of the 19th century; fought for white women's equality
  • Ida B. Wells: formed a Republican Women's Club in IL after women were granted the right to vote in state elections; founded National Association of Colored Women's Clubs

Crash Course: Women in the 19th Century

Crash Course: Women's Suffrage

Note: This video goes a little beyond the time period.

Political Inequality: Restricted Freedoms

  • restricted voting rights for black men inlcuded poll taxes, grandfather clauses, literacy tests; some primaries were reserved for white people
  • civil rights cases often struck down by the Supreme Court
  • protective laws struck down as well
  • could not serve on juries, received stiffer penalties for breaking the law, accused of crimes and not given formal, court-ordered sentence
  • Jim Crow Laws

Social Inequality: "Separate but equal"

  • not treated equally by many white people, especially the Ku Klux Klan
  • violent attacks included lynching, burning, and whipping
  • Plessy v. Ferguson: "separate but equal"
  • segregation in most if not all public places, including (but not limited to) water fountains, bathrooms, restaurants, schools, etc.

Economic Inequality: Sharecropping and Crowded Cities

  • sharecropping and tenent farming post-Civil War were very similar to slavery
  • in cities, African-Americans ended up working low-paying jobs
  • most skilled work went to white people
  • either way, earned barely enough to live on and often lived in the slums

Notable Figures

  • Booker T. Washington: born a slave; said that black people should work hard in a specific field to prove that they are equal
  • W. E. B. DuBois: first black Harvard graduate, founder of NAACP; said that black people needed to get higher education to achieve success
  • Ida B. Wells: editor of the Memphis Free Speech; campaigned against segregation and Jim Crow Laws; received many death threats

Crash Course: The Progressive Era

Note: This video does not talk solely about the issues addressed here, but it does talk about Jim Crow Laws and related topics.

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