Skip to main content

The New Jersey State Library is closed for walk-in service, but Reference Staff are available for assistance at refdesk@njstatelib.org.

Votes For Women!

The Fight For Women's Suffrage in New Jersey Newspapers In Chronicling America

New Jersey Suffrage Timeline

1776 New Jersey constitution allows women and free blacks to vote under certain conditions.
1790 Law passes which uses "he" and "she" when referring to voters.
1797 Voting law is revised but the law still refers to  "he" and "she"
1800 New Jersey women vote for presidential electors.
1807

Revised voting law limits voting to "free, white males".

1844

Second New Jersey constitution limits voting to "free, white males.

1857 Lucy Stone refuses to pay her property taxes in Orange, N.J. claiming "taxation without representation"
1867 New Jersey Woman Suffrage Association founded by Lucy Stone
1868

Lucy Stone published pamphlet, Reasons Why the Women of New Jersey Should Vote.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony attend meeting in Vineland

New Jersey women petition state legislature for right to vote.

1869

Fifteenth Amendment ratified, giving the vote to black men

Equal Rights Association splinters over strategy and tactics and the National Woman Suffrage Association (NWSA) and the American Woman Suffrage Association (AWSA) are formed

Memorial to New Jersey Legislature by New Jersey Woman Suffrage Association (NJWSA) on women's rights.

1873 Women eligible to serve as school trustees, even though women cannot vote in school trustee elections
1876 New Jersey Women's Christian Temperance Union organized in Trenton.
1880 Elizabeth Cady Stanton tries to vote in Tenafly, NJ.
1884

New Jersey women petition the New Jersey legislature for full suffrage for women.

1887 Legislature passes law giving women the right to vote in school elections.
1890

NJWSA elects Judge John Whitehead as president.

1891 Antionette Brown Blackwell becomes president of NJWSA
1892 Amelia Dickinson Pope becomes president of NJWSA.
1893 Florence Howe Hall becomes president of the NJWSA and remains in that position until 1896
1894

In Allison v. Blake the N.J. Supreme Court decides that it is unconstitutional for women to vote in school elections, though a later decision  allows that they can vote on school appropriations

New Jersey State Federation of Women's Clubs founded.

1897

A vote that would have allowed women to vote in school elections was defeated by 10,000 out of 140,000 votes.

1900

Minola Graham Sexton elected president of NJWSA.

1901 Josephine Silow Yates of Mattick, N.J became president of the National Association of Colored Women.
1905 NJWSA without a leader until 1908.
1908

Clara Laddey becomes president of the NJWSA

The Equality League of Self-Supporting Women (later renamed the Women's Political Union) formed and focuses on generating support from both Republicans and Democrats.

1910

Equal Franchise Society founded in Hoboken

New Jersey Men's League for Equal Suffrage established in Newark

1912

Resolution in favor of woman suffrage first introduced in New Jersey Senate. Three years later it passed both houses of two successive legislatures

Lillian Ford Feickert becomes president of the NJWSA. Membership of 1200.

Carpenter v. Cornish heard before the N.J. Court of Appeals. The argument is made that the 1844 Constitution was illegal in taking away rights granted by the constitution of 1776. The court disagreed.

1913

Democratic and Republican parties endorse women's suffrage.

Major suffrage groups meet with Woodrow Wilson who offers a vague endorsement.

1914

Men's Anti-Suffrage League of New Jersey formed

New Jersey Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage founded.

Grace Baxter Fenderson of New Jersey helps to found the NAACP which supports female suffrage

1915

Woodrow Wilson comes out in support of suffrage "as a private citizen" two weeks before the vote

New Jersey Referendum on Amendment defeated in public election by 51,108 out of 317,672. Lost in every county except Ocean

Rev. Florence Spearing Randolph organizes the N.J. State Federation of Colored Women's Clubs

Branch of Congressional Union organized in New Jersey with Alison Turnbull Hopkins as president

New Jersey State Federation of Women's Clubs defeated a suffrage resolution

Other suffrage groups merge with the NJWSA bringing membership to 50,000

1916 National Women's Party forms a chapter in New Jersey with Alison Hopkins as president
1917

New Jersey women are among those arrested in front of the White House

The Equal Franchise Society and the Women's Political Union both vote to disband and merge with the NJWSA.

The New Jersey State Federation of Colored Women's Clubs allies with NJWSA

1918

Republican governor Walter E. Edge was pro-suffrage

NJWSA membership reaches 120,000

1920 New Jersey is the 29th state to ratify the suffrage amendment

 

Copyright © New Jersey State Library 1796-2020