tv American Artifacts Votes for Women CSPAN August 17, 2020 3:05am-3:42am EDT
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it contains all the contact information you need to stay in touch with member ovs congress, federal agencies and state governors. order your copy today at c-spanstore.org. >> next, a visit to smithsonian's national portrait gallery. n the second of a two-part program, american history gets a guided tool of exhibits marking the centennial of the 19th amendment. using political cartoons and images of suffragettes picketing the white house. kate: i'm kate lemay, and i'm the curator of votes for women. i'm standing in front of what we call our title treatment. it is large low up of this born
actress, and she was acting as columbia, the allegorical figure that represents the united states during the conclusion of this parade in washington, d.c. that's just one event of the ong suffrage movement this exhibition highlights. we have 124 objects of this long history bringing it right up to 1920. but then also clearing the 19th amendment and when it did not do was enfranchise all women including women of color.
so i took the exhibition up to the voting rights act of 1965. if you will come with me we will explore the 1913 parade more in depth. we are standing in front f the photo postcards of the parade. this was a completely different tactic than what had been done before with other suffragists. after spending some -- what alice paul was trying to do was create headlines, so after spending some time in britain, she basically got radel got radicalized by the suffragists. when she came back to the united
states. she then organized with the congressional union this parade. 8000 suffragists marched down the capital, down pennsylvania avenue. the treasury building had this pageant for lady liberty. in between the suffragists had to make their way through 500,000 spectators. one of the problems of this parade is it did not have police protection because the chief was not a riend of suffragettes. instead, he denied them police protection even though alice had applied for the permit. instead the secretary of war who is part of the presidential cabinet put what we would think of as the national guard on standby in nearby fort myers in irginia. hen the crowd became unruly,
and being very aggressive, that is when they literally called in the calvary from virginia and had that group as the protector of the suffragette. it was quite dramatic and that sent because they were not expecting this huge crowd, but the next day was president wilson's inaugural speech for his first term as president. almost nobody showed up to his speech. he asked, where is everybody? he was told all the spectators had come out the day before to see the suffragettes. on your right is the official program. you can see that this is one of four existing program that remain. you can see the joan of arc figures in the purple robe, the
color of royalty. walking down the front of the capital with her trumpet and a banner that says votes for women. she is heralding in this new cause for freedom. i mention alice call who had been radicalized and she brought back those compelling tactics. she is next generation of suffragette. he's broken off from the suffrage association, and she is employing more attention grabbing tactics, like the parade, as well as creating the poster that i am standing next o. e was actually employed by a
major company. he was married to a suffragette. the husbands of these women out there advocating for the cause. they were doing their best to support women. e has incorporated the double-headed axe, and a hat that was worn by this ancient god, hermes. we think of him as the divine messenger of equality. the double-headed acts was symbolizing the mother goddess, so there are all these kinds of different ways that they were trying to communicate these ideas of equality by beating out -- reaching out to different civilizations. why not women in americans i.e. as well to mark there was an
illustrator and artist who made over 200 illustrations who worked to help the suffrage cause by creating depictions of women at work advocating for the cause. they were published in a magazine newspaper that the women's party produced three years and years. here, we see this young woman, educating herself by reading a book called campaign textbook. she is beautifully dressed, has a nice, embroidered shirt on, her hair is up, and she is wearing nice shoes, and she is sitting in front of her desk,
rowded with books. the books are lists of voters. it is all specific to the map of his district. all this to exemplify how they were lobbying. they were the first group to really understand what lobbying was and entailed and what it gain themhow it would basically political power through commencing there representatives and legislators. this could apply to any state. this is part of that state-by-state effort that they ere doing, but under the lead, they were really interested in the federal amendment. they were not asking the state-by-state representatives, instead, it would to be -- it
would be to support an amendment. if it would pass in the house and then the senate and then convince the fellow legislatures n the states to ratify it. so, she is a great figure in the movement because she helped to popularize that and helps people understand it. she was educated at the philadelphia academy of fine rts. she was a great artist of her own right. we were excited to get some of these objects on the wall, to make sure that we understood and that we understand today how the suffrage movement was being taught in its own way during the era. in 1917, alice paul decided to do something even more drastic than marching down pennsylvania venue.
that was to picket the white house. this was one of the first groups of picketers that were nonviolent, that stood outside the white house and basically declared their protest of the president in personal terms. they would carry banners saying, what will you do for women's suffrage. he president was woodrow wilson, who would carry out two terms as president. e did not endorse suffrage cause until 1919. so at this point we're in 1915. in 1917, they started picketing the white house. two long years of ticketing. every day, they would stand outside the white house and hold a silent sentinel. they would leave their
headquarters, which was across the square situated in front of the white house. on the other site of the square where the headquarters. of the national women's party. they had leave the headquarters in their banners in hand purple and gold. they had adopted purple into suffrage colors with the new group around 1913. basically, that is what they did for two years and stood their round. they also included college women. they are wearing the banners of which colleges that they went to. college woman would protest or different state delegations would protest and even working women would protest as well. working women only had one day ff of work a week.
that was on a sunday. they could not protest unless it was sunday. we can talk about working women here, where you see the title cover of the maryland suffrage news depicting a woman who was white, who was a seamstress, who had been working for more than eight hours, today, which are our normal working hours. regulated by federal law. working women felt like they were being abused, and there were no laws that could protect hem, so this woman was basically test to help and the illustration was made by mary taylor. it was done by one of the many chapters and it is from the
collection of the maryland istorical society. the suffragists were eventually arrested for obstructing traffic, which was not exactly their fault. it was because of all the male spectators that had come out to jeer at them they were creating the block, the masses of human bodies that were obstructing traffic. but they were arrested. you can see the portrait of the two women. the women are most likely not going to pay their fine, and then they would be sentenced to jail. in the d.c. jail or the workhouse. what i find interesting is that they are very well dressed. men that were picketing were
from an elite, wealthy background, the majority of them. there were working women who would pick it on sundays, and they were very much a part of the suffrage cause later on, but there were no african-american that were part of this movement at this point because alice paul did not include them but also, i wonder if because they are a vulnerable population, to be arrested meant that they were putting themselves at a higher risk even than the privileged white women were at. there is a kind of balance that they were striking at this point in time. the top photo, you can see a college educated and she is protesting that alice paul, who
had been in prison, that the government give paul and the other suffrage prisoners the privilege of the american political prisoner. the american government did not treat the suffragists as political prisoners but as criminals. this meant that there was poor food, no reading, no rivileges. given to the suffragists when they were in prison. so they immediately picked up on that and created banners to point out that the government gave a political activist does privileges, so why wouldn't the american government did that for other political activists in the united states was the question. moving this way, you can see another beautiful drawing.
she is likening the suffrage ffort, where the women are getting grabbed and assaulted by angry men. she is likening that moment to raining for the draft. april, the u.s. entered world war i. this is a major, major moment for suffrage because then, they were able to say that they were doing all this effort on the home front or serving as nurses and doctors with the red cross with their own units of support and getting involved in the war directly, so why couldn't they have a political oice, if they were basically giving up their lives for the united states.
nina allen's drawing really gets to that. meanwhile, these angry men are attacking these white women, carrying the banner. this is a piece of cotton. uring their imprisonment, they decided to create their own embroidered signature. it was on a piece of burlap. it was a testimony to the fact that they were there and that this happened to them. finally, you have two photographs. one is of lucy burns, in ail. he was also one of the leaders of this militant suffrage moment
and here, you see the arrest of the suffragists, put into the police wagons and being carted off to basically get sentenced to ail. from 1917 through the end of 1919 they continued to picket outside of the white house. i was really interested to see images of the suffragists up close and personal, almost environmental because i wanted to emphasize that these were individuals, with their own lives, spending their time on this important cause. the video behind me is playing images of then picketing. they kept up the pressure. by creating the headlines and creating the spectacle, i think
they finally achieved the kind of momentum they were searching for throughout the entire movement because the pressure that they place on president oodrow wilson was so much that cause, y endorsed the and when he did on may 21 of 1919, the amendment was proposed actually passed the house of representatives and then it passed in the senate. on june 4, 1919. at which point, the amendment was sent out to the state to get them to sign off on ratifying the amendment. which would then become law. this part of the exhibition really covers the militant suffragists, explains why they were doing what they were doing and in the last room, we will see what it actually says and
how women's political voices changed after being granted the right to vote, but also to look at which women did not have the right to vote and what they say about that. when women finally got the right to vote, then they had a political voice, and then they were voters. you have calvin coolidge running or vice president along with harding who ran for president for the republican ticket together in 1920. that was for the republican party ticket. this is from october of 1920. for your own good, vote for the republican party. they were producing all this ecruitment, basically. also, material culture in the form of the yellow ribbon.
under the 19th amendment, i cast my first vote. november, 1920. clearly, it was engaging the new, female voter. it was for harding and coolidge on a state republican ticket. and then, on a piece of paper, it says, souvenir of this greatest event of my life. hey believe dramatized the act of voting, but for some women, this really was the greatest event of their life. it meant that they had achieved the first step toward equality democrat -- more democratic experience.
in the concluding gallery of this exhibition, i wanted to make sure to point out the text of the 19th amendment, what it says and what it does not say. it reads, the rights of citizens of the u.s. to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the u.s. or by any state, on account of sex. letting this sink in, when you think about the wording of the 19th amendment, as it applies to giving the right to vote to women, nowhere does it say guarantees the right to ote. that is a big difference in it is achieving the right to vote everybody. in this moment, states can still find ways through which to disenfranchise voters.
p to this moment, up to this contemporary moment in 2019, there are laws out there that are seeking to disenfranchise voters. they were still contending with the wording of this 19th amendment because it is not as specific as we would like it to be, and it would not be until the voting rights act of 1965 that things became crystal clear, and people were guaranteed the right to vote and not be discriminated against based upon their race. i am standing in front of a ortrait. she was forced to attend the carlisle boarding school, creating and assimilation of native americans within white society, not allowing them to speak their native language,
putting them into western dress, and so forth. so, she understood the culture of her native tribe, which was so indian, and also she was able to bridge the gap and talk with white leaders. and, as a result, she was able to, with other native americans, was able to found this society of the american in the end. this was an activists society that really promoted equal rights for native americans. it was a long and lonely road. they weren't even considered citizens of the united states until 1924. this is four years after the 19th amendment a sensibly granted citizens the right to
vote. that does not apply to native americans. and ever since, native americans continue to have to fight for their rights, including, most recently, in north dakota, when voter enfranchisement laws actually made it so you cannot vote unless you have a physical address. lots of native americans living on reservation. so, they are not allowed to vote under these current laws. so, if we continue, i just want the latinxt also, citizens of the united states, who include citizens of puerto
rico, we're looking at a portrait made in 1992. she was quite elderly at this time. but she had been elected as the first female governor of san juan. and in 1932, she was a suffragist, and she was actually advocating for the right to vote among literate white women in residing in puerto rico. so, she was trying to advocate for suffrage, but it was the step approach and it wasn't until 1935 that women across puerto rico, all women were given the right to vote. and then later on, as i mentioned, she was elected mayor she946, i believe, which held for many terms through 1968. so, she's a really beloved figure.
she's not the only suffragist from puerto rico. we have another one. we don't have a portrait of her. we couldn't get one in time for this exhibition. so, this is a portrait from our own collection that we were able to use to represent latinx populations in the united states. and finally, i'm showing you a portrait of someone who is active for native american rights, and she was the expert witness when there was a civil rights case in 1879.
and so she was able to help the native americans choose where to live. so, they had been moved left and right, left and right all over the place. in this case, she was actually able to help make into law the rights of native americans to choose where they were able to live. so, this is another example of an activist who was not single issue focused only on suffrage, but was working on other ways to help women lives and rights of women within the native communities, who didn't have that one, but instead were working for lots of different things: with suffrage, alongside of suffrage. aght now we're looking at portrait of someone who was a especially in and
the 1964 democratic convention. she gave a speech that galvanized the american public, because it was televised. and she said i'm sick and tired of being sick and tired. and that was alluding to her long struggle to have a life as an african-american citizenship rights in the united states. earlier, she had attempted to vote in the early 1950's. as a young woman, she had to give up going to school in order to help her family. she worked as a young woman and never learned how to read. so, this is one example of an activist whose words are spoken from the heart and she really had this unmeasurable success in influencing the american public at large because her speech was televised.
in 1964. and so the voting rights act was signed in 1965, in part because of that convention. and it was signed by president lyndon b. johnson. and i'm also standing next to -- this is a later portrait, she also had been working on the voting rights act. as a woman of color, she's asian american, she also had seen and witnessed the infringement of her citizenship right. and so part of her legacy as the -- is now the voting rights act but also title ix. sher the voting rights act, went on to help design the architect of the title ix amendment, which is basically the equal opportunity education act. that a lot of us women have benefited from.
so, these two figures helped to take the story up to 1965 and even to point beyond to how these citizenship rights are a conversation and these activists, particularly these women, really helped change and influence american law. so, i'm so excited to have told you a little about this exhibition. it included six galleries and this long hallway and was really covering the time from 1832 through 1920, but also pointing to the events that happened after the amendment, right after the voting rights act. and through the portraits of these women, what i'm really hoping people come away with is that these women were empowering themselves and help to empower us today. they were looking at the past and they were looking at what had not been done. they were setting up a task for
themselves to change the unites states constitution. they did it and then they had set the example to take our voting rights and to ensure they remain sacred and they remain unquestioned and safeguarded for eternity, for american citizens. and so in this exhibition, not only are you learning history, but i hope you are feeling empowered yourself. this was the second of a two-part tour of the national portrait gallery's vote for women exhibit, marking the centennial of the 19th amendment. you can watch this and other american artifacts programs by visiting our website at c-span.org/history. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2020] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] >> c-span's washington journal, every day we're taking your calls live on the air on the news of the day and we'll discuss policy issues that impact you. start.up, we preview the
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offered a preview of day one of the democratic national convention live at 10:45 p.m. eastern. at noon, a conversation with hillary clinton on u.s. foreign policy, hosted by the atlantic council. and the president travels to mankato, minnesota to get remarks on the economy, live at 3:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. >> and house speaker land people seek releasing -- nancy pelosi releasing this statement. due to what she's calling the devastating effects on the president's campaign to sabotage the election, i am calling upon the house to return to session later this week to vote on oversight and reform committee chairwoman karen's delivering for america act, which prohibits the postal service from if limiting any changes to operations or level of service it had in place on january 1,
2020." she says an an announcement of the week schedule will be announced soon. during president trump's news conference saturday on the federal response to the pandemic, he was asked about efforts to defund the post office as voters consider mail-in ballots due to the pandemic. he also gave an update on cases of covid-19 across the u.s. >> leads and gentlemen, the president of the united states, donald j. trump. ♪ pres. trump: thank you. thank you very much. appreciate it. let me update you onhe