Los Altos-Mountain View American Association of University Women (AAUW) salutes the Los Altos History Museum for the creation of “Rise Up! The Fight for Women’s Suffrage,” an illuminating exhibition about the local and national struggle that led to women being granted the right to vote in California in 1911, and in the rest of the country in 1920.
Since 1882, through funding and action, AAUW has advocated for and promoted the rights of women to succeed in higher education, to hold an equitable and equal place in the workforce, to make their own decisions about health, and to take their place in the governing of America.
When the organization had their convention in California in August 1915, the year of the Pan-American World’s Fair, the association agreed “recognizing that under our government, education in both its academic and social aspects is controlled by the electors, be it Resolved that we, as a body of college women, dedicated to the promotion of education and desirous of furthering our ability for usefulness, favor suffrage for women.”
To remind members and the country of the significance of the right to vote, AAUW branch members broached the idea of a suffrage rights exhibit in honor of the 100th anniversary celebration of Amendment XIX to Museum Director Elisabeth Ward in December 2018. After a year and a half of suggestion and research, with contributions from AAUW, League of Women Voters, and local college professors, the exhibit is now open.
Besides sponsorship for this exhibit, since 1953 LA-MV AAUW has rolled out many projects to support the community. Please enjoy a presentation of the branch’s history.
Contributed by Claire Noonan, LA-MV AAUW Board Member