The 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment was celebrated on August 19 at the Ozaukee County Supervisors’ Board Meeting in Port Washington, one day after the actual anniversary. County Board Chairperson Lee Schlenvogt read a proclamation from the National Women’s History Alliance recognizing the anniversary and commemorating the efforts of the women’s suffrage movement and the role of women in our democracy. This proclamation not only commemorates this historic moment in history but acknowledged the fact that women of color were largely left out and full voting rights were not won for all until the passage of the Voting Rights Act. After the reading of the declaration, another supervisor, Alice Read, thanked the LWVOZ for our work in Ozaukee County, recognizing our role in promoting voting and educating the public through forums and discussions.
Before the event refreshments in the form of homemade ginger snaps and coffee were provided. Ginger snaps seemed appropriate for the event, in keeping with a favorite quote of suffragist Carrie Chapman Catt, the founder of the League of Women Voters. She said: “As a matter of fact we don’t care a ginger snap about anything but that Federal Amendment.” She was referring, of course, to the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote. It was the culmination of 72 years of struggle and Catt worked tirelessly to make it happen.
Fourteen Ozaukee County League members were present: Vonna Pitel and Nancy Haacke, both in suffragist dress, Susan Waldo, Mary Fran Lepeska, Joyce Harms, Barbara Hunt, Ellen MacFarlane, Marge Palleon, Louise Mollinger, Barbara Johnson, Donna Fowler, Kathy Westphal, Claire Vanderslice, and Clyde Winter.