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August 24

Compiled and Written by Irene Stuber
who is solely responsible for its content.
This version of Women of Achievement has been taken
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Continued: History of Woman's Suffrage

Hester Bateman


QUOTES by I Ching and Madame Chiang Kai-shek.


      Have women lost the way? In 1922, the leader who engineered the suffrage victory and was leading women towards strong political influence said:
"The League of Women Voters aspires to be a part of the big majorities which ADMINISTER OUR GOVERNMENT [emphasis WOAH], and at the same time it wishes to be one of the minorities which agitate and educate and shape ideas today which the majority will adopt tomorrow."

But, of course, things did not go smoothly for women's rights after the 19th Amendment was ratified in 1920. Two years later at a League of Women Voters' convention, the Governor of New York blasted women and women's rights, stating, "There is no proper place for a League of Women Voters... Any organization which seeks to exert political power is a menace to our free institutions and to representative government."
      Carrie Chapman Catt in a spontaneous reply, which received front-page headlines across the country said:

"There remains a minority of political men who were bitter against suffragists `because we are women.'
      "I do not recall one time in history when a great reform was brought about by a political party.
      "The League of Women Voters aspires to be a part of the big majorities which administer our government, and at the same time it wishes to be one of the minorities which agitate and educate and shape ideas today which the majority will adopt tomorrow."

      Future first lady Eleanor Roosevelt came away FROM a LWV meeting an unabashed admirer of CCC according the wonderful biography of ER by Blanche Wiesen Cook. She wrote her husband, "Mrs. Catt is clear, cold reason."
      The militant feminists as exemplified by Alice Paul opposed women working within political parties and wanted women-only political activities. She did NOT believe in cooperation and working within the political system. That fateful, hot summer in Tennessee offers one of the most remarkable studies of successful political pressure ever recorded in this nation: a group of mostly older women who had NO political power themselves yet were able to lobby and win the vote for women.
      These remarkable women worked WITHIN the political system of the day to win the vote. The militants like Alice Paul kept their heads down and their voices muted when all the chips went on the line in Nashville.
      Catt's patience with them and their disruptive methods had run out. She made it plain that the militant methods would ruin the delicate balance that they were forging and it would NOT be tolerated.
      Paul stayed home in Washington. Even her own advisors said her presence would be too disruptive and galvanizing. Instead, her trusted lieutenant and heart, also the heart of Paul's group, Lucy Burns, went to Nashville and campaigned quietly.       Beyond just winning, there was the problem of governing.
      CCC set up the League of Women Voters to train women to use the ballot and to USE POLITICAL POWER! The league is still in existence.

For many years it appeared that women were voting the way their fathers and husbands were voting. It appeared that the woman's vote hadn't made any difference. But the analysts weren't really paying attention, for like HIStorians, they were not seeing what wasn't reflected in their mirrors. In truth, women were moving up in the political parties, gaining strength and, experience, gradually winning local and state elections, feeling their way, learning the business of women in politics.
      And in the voting booth, gradually what is being called the "gender gap" surfaced. It made itself known dramatically to male political analysts in the 1990 election of Ann Richards as governor of Texas when droves of women who had never voted before lined up to register.
      Analysts said 62% of the women voting voted for Richards and carried the election, offsetting the men's votes that usually carried elections.
      During the height of the suffrage battle, CCC said, "It takes 100 years to change people's minds."
      It's been 80...

      "Women have suffered an agony of soul which you can never comprehend, that you and your daughters might inherit political freedom.
      "That vote has been costly.
      "Prize it."
            -- Carrie Chapman Catt, November, 1920.

(Addendum: The legality of the passage of the 19th Amendment was not actually settled until a Supreme Court ruling in 1921. It has been claimed - since the advent of the ultra-conservative movement - the ratification of the 19th Amendment and its approval by the Supreme Court have several weak legal points. Some conservatives feel that the 19th Amendment can be scrapped if it can be brought up before a conservative Supreme Court.)

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Hester Bateman

      Before the Industrial Revolution of the 1800s put men in factories and made them the primary wage earner of the family, women had more latitude in their mode of earning a living - and gaining fame.
      But even then, the most successful women were often the widows who carried on the business rather than one who was able to build a career without a man to front for her. However, regardless of the name on the door, most small businesses were actually mom and pop enterprises so when a woman was widowed, she was highly trained and often the brains or the talent of the enterprise.
      Such was the case with Hester Bateman, a London, England, silversmith noted for her elegant silver of domestic items. She was the widow of John Bateman who died in 1760.
      Mr. Bateman did contract work for other silversmiths and other things such as highly ornate watch chains.
      Hester soon gained enough confidence on her own that she registered her own silversmithing mark and with the help of her two sons and an apprentice began to make a name for herself in the design of tableware. The lines of her sugar bowls, teapots, spoons, knives, and forks were restrained, particular pleasing, well balanced, and lacking the ornateness that marred so much of the tableware of the period. Added to her design ability was a shrewd business acumen that enabled the widow Hester to became one of the noted and successful silversmiths of the era.
      Her sons and other relatives continued the tradition for years after her retirement in 1790 but the "mark" was never as prestigious.

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More Women of Achievement

      Buell, Marge Henderson - Although Dale Messick is popularly known at the first female comic strip author/artist for her Brenda Starr reporter series, Marge Henderson Buell predates Messick. Buell developed the fabulously successful comic strip Little Lulu in the 1930s. It was so popular that she had to hire a number of men cartoonists to take care of the peripherals such as the comic books, advertisement requests, et. Little Lulu was a budding feminist with more than a bit of devil in her. Buell sold the script while it was still on top and retired a very wealthy woman.

      Bramson, Josephine - her farewell keyboard concert in 1846 received rave reviews in a time when women musicians were frowned upon in America. In fact, in the era, women were not even allowed to speak in public, no less challenge men on the music stage.

      Berrigan, Helen Ginger Berrigan - American federal judge, for the U.S. District Court, Eastern district, New Orleans, Louisiana 1994-

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B. 08-24-1707, Selina Hastings, central figure in the evangelical movement in 18th Century England. She assisted financially in the formation of Dartmouth and Princeton even though she, as a woman, could not attend either or any college.

B. 08-24-1860, Laura Drake Gill, innovative dean at Barnard College.

B. 08-24-1885, Elizabeth Lee Hazen, microbiologist, mycologist, co-discoverer of the anti-fungal antibiotic mystatin, spent most of her career in various capacities at Columbia University; at the Mycology Laboratory she collected soil samples to find naturally occurring antifungal bacteria that acted much in the same way penicillin does.
      She began working with Rachel Brown of the Central Laboratory who chemically tested the samples. They found *streptomyces noursei* and the announcement of it was made in October 1950. Half the royaltiesn went into the Brown-Hazen Fund for the support of further scientific studies in the field.

B. 08-24-1895, Carol Weiss King, attorney who specialized in outstanding legal briefs. Primarily a researcher, her briefs were argued by other attorneys before the U.S. Supreme Court in at least a dozen major cases that changed immigration laws and deportation regulations as well as the civil rights of those accused of criminal acts, such as the right of a fair trial before a fair jury in one of the Scottsboro Boys appeals.

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      "Whenever a feeling is voiced with truth and frankness.... a mysterious and far-reaching influence is exerted. At first it acts on those who are inwardly receptive. But the circle grows larger and larger... The effect is but the reflection of something that emanates from one's own heart."
            -- I Ching

      "For is it not true that human progress is but a mighty growing pattern woven together by the tenuous single threads united in a common effort?"
            -- Soon Mei-ling (Madame Chiang Kai-shek)

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