The right to vote: A century of women's suffrage

August 26, 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the certification of the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution. The 19th Amendment states: "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex." Adding an amendment to the Constitution requires support from three-fourths of the states, which in 1920 was 36 states. Hawaii and Alaska were still territories. Twelve states didn't ratify the 19th Amendment initially, but because it was ratified by three-fourths of the states, the right to vote applied to all 48 states and territories.

Did you know that Mississippi was the last state to ratify the 19th Amendment? The map below shows which states initially ratified the 19th Amendment and which states didn't. Notice that some states already supported women’s right to vote before the 19th Amendment was passed, though some women, especially minorities, faced challenges exercising their right to vote even after the 19th amendment was passed. Hover over a state to see its official ratification date.

Women's voting rights prior to the 19th Amendment

Did you know that fifteen states allowed women to vote before the 19th Amendment was passed? Between 1867 and August 18, 1920, these states allowed women to vote. The map below shows where suffrage was approved, defeated, or not proposed. Hover over a state to see the last date the measure was considered.