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A new militant suffrage group, the National Women’s Party (NWP), formed in 1916. Led by Alice Paul, the NWP began picketing the White House. The militants criticized President Woodrow Wilson for going to war “to make the world safe for democracy” in World War I, while in the United States women were denied the right to vote.…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: 1917

After Congress approved the 19th Amendment in June 1919, the amendment had to be ratified by three fourths of the states. Fortunately, suffragists were well organized at the local level to pressure state legislatures into approving the amendment. To keep track of the amendment’s progress, the National Women’s Party created a…
American college students in the early 1930s increasingly protested U.S. involvement in the war in Europe. They organized campus strikes around the nation and encouraged students to pledge non-cooperation in any war. This flyer is from the National Committee for the Student Congress Against War, for a program held at the University of Chicago on…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: 1932

Despite a significant surge in student anti-war activities during the early 1930s, the outbreak of civil war in Spain in 1936 caused many student organizations to rally against the rise of fascism in Europe. The aggression of Hitler and Mussolini presented a challenge to these progressive students, who opposed war in principle but recognized the…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: 1936

The interwar peace movement was arguably the largest mass movement of the 1920s and 1930s, a mobilization often overlooked in the wake of the broad popular consensus that ultimately supported the U.S. involvement in World War II. The destruction wrought in World War I (known in the 1920s and 1930s as the "Great War") and the cynical nationalist…

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Item Type: Speech
Date: 1941

This letter from the Women's Political Council to the Mayor of Montgomery, Alabama, threatens a bus boycott by the city's African Americans if demands for fair treatment are not met.

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Item Type: Diary/Letter
Date: 1954

In 1960, four African-American college students in Greensboro, North Carolina, began "sitting in" at the local Woolworth store’s lunch counter, which, like virtually all such lunch counters at the time, did not serve black customers. The protesters refused to leave until they were served, and the standoff was resolved only when the…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: 1960

This plan, written by Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) member Charles Cobb, proposed that SNCC include Freedom Schools as part of the massive organizing effort it was planning for the summer of 1964. SNCC was creating Freedom Summer to bring hundreds of college students from around the country to Mississippi, and Cobb believed that…

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Item Type: Pamphlet/Petition
Date: 1963

In this photograph taken at the August 28, 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, women marchers carry signs supporting a variety of demands.
Though rallies featured national figures like Martin Luther King, Jr., and lawsuits were often filed by men, the day-in, day-out on-the-ground organizing and protesting against school segregation was led by mothers who demanded the best possible education for their children. In 1958 in New York City, a group of mothers nicknamed the "Harlem Nine"…

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Item Type: Photograph
Date: Circa 1964