Sonoma County 2020 Women's Suffrage Project

Community Events

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Join us as we march in local parades and table at local events to increase the awareness of celebrating the centennial of the 19th Amendment.

History & Education

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History and Education are the foundation and the future of what our year long project is doing - learn more below.

Social Justice & Advocacy

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One hundred years after women won the right to vote we are still fighting for rights, the vote, to be heard and for all of us to represented. 

Scroll down to learn more ...

Community Events

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History of Suffrage Parades

On March 3, 1913 -The day preceding President Wilson's inauguration, 8,000 suffragists parade in Washington, DC, organized by Alice Paul.  They are mobbed by abusive crowds along the way. 

On May 10, 1913 - The largest suffrage parade to date marches down Fifth Avenue, New York City. 10,000 people, including perhaps 500 men, paraded past 150–500,000 onlookers. 

Sonoma County's Rich Tradition of Parades

In Sonoma County, there roughly 10 parades throughout the year in various cities and the tradition of parades is alive, but unfortunately challenged by raising funds to cover costs. The Sonoma County 2020 Women's Suffrage Project made a conscious decision to participate in all the parades possible throughout the county rather than create our own parade in order to support already existing parades, reduce our need to raise additional funds and to have more awareness of the celebration of the centennial throughout the County.

We Are Marching Nearly Every Month of the Year

Our parade schedule starts with the Cloverdale Citrus Fair Parade in February and continues with the Apple Blossom Parade and Butter & Eggs Day Parade in April, the Windsor Day Parade & Rose Parade in May, the Pride Parade in June, several July 4th Parades, and concludes with the Founders Day Parade in Rohnert Park in October. The months without parades January, March and August you will see us at other local events.


Check out our calendar for all the dates of parades and events. 

March With Us

You are welcome to march with Sonoma County 2020 Women's Suffrage Project in Parades. More info to come on how and when to sign-up to march with us. 

Collaborations with Community Groups

We are collaborating with many community groups throughout Sonoma County to make our presence at parade more representative of all in our community. If belong to or know of a group who would like to march to bring attention to the celebration of the centennial, please let us know we would love to promote you as a collaborating organization. Contact us at socowomen2020@gmail.com

History and education

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Our History Is Our Strength!

That is a motto of the National Women's History Alliance as they have been writing women into history books for 40-years. Women made history throughout all the ages but their stories were often not written about and/or overshadowed by their male-counterparts. We find strength in learning more about all women and people in the suffrage movement - those who have names you may already recognize and those who may be new to you. 

The History Keepers

We are extremely fortunate to have a collaboration with the Sonoma County History & Genealogy Library managed by Katherine Rinehart who is also a co-chair of our History & Education Committee. Katherine and her team of historians or "history keepers" including invaluable staff and volunteers are tremendous resources for our whole our community. The next time you want to dive into some local history visit them or subscribe to their newsletter HERE 

Mapping the Suffrage Movement in Sonoma County

Sonoma County's role in the Suffrage Movement is being mapped by the volunteers at the Sonoma County History and Genealogy Library. The people and places of the suffrage movement are being uncovered to be shared with everyone. Mapping will be available online at the National Votes for Women Trail

Suffrage Movement Speaker Series

The Suffrage Movement Speaker Series is hosted by the Sonoma County History & Genealogy Library and includes presentations by leading women's history scholars such as Dr. Sally Roesch Wagner editor of The Women's Suffrage Movement, Dr. Khal Schneider who will discuss voting rights within context of the Native American experience, Robert P. J. Cooney, Jr. author Winning the Vote: The Triumph of the American Woman Suffrage Movement, and Rebecca J. Mead author of How the Vote was Won: Woman Suffrage in the Western United States (1868 - 1914). For the various dates, times and locations of the speaker series visit our calendar 

Museum Exhibits

Several Museums in Sonoma County are honoring the centennial of Women's Right to Vote with exhibits highlighting either the Suffrage Movement or the history of Women in Sonoma County. Some of these museums include the following: Museum of Sonoma County, Petaluma Museum, West County Museum and others are being added. Our calendar will have dates and details of their upcoming exhibits. 

Honor a Suffragist

Honor a local suffragist by visiting their grave site at the local cemetery on August 26, 2020, the 100th Anniversary of when the 19th Amendment was signed into law. Suffrage grave sites will be adorned with small Victory Suffrage Flags displaying the colors purple, gold and white. Learn more about this project by visiting HERE  Thank you to Leasa Graves, Project Coordinator of CA 2020 Women's Suffrage Project for making this possible and also being a co-chair of our History & Education Committee. 

Social Justice & Advocacy

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We Stand On Their Shoulders

Women fighting for their right to vote in the suffrage movement, were partly inspired by the Native American Women in and around Seneca Falls, New York and their struggle intersected with the abolitionist movement, labor movement and temperance. While the 19th Amendment won the right to vote for women, it did not change the discriminatory practices of excluding women of color, indigenous women and those without means. Still today the fight against voter suppression of marginalized populations continues. While we celebrate the successes of the suffrage movement, we must also work to breakdown the barriers that still exist to solidify the full inclusion of all in the right to vote.

Inclusion

Sonoma County 2020 Women's Suffrage Project's Social Justice and Advocacy Committee co-chaired by Bernice Espinoza and Kristin Long, is committed to the inclusion of all people in our programs. Women of color, Trans-women and non-binary individuals are those more likely to experience discriminatory practices of suppression at the polls and elsewhere in our community. Without equal representation the likelihood of these practices changing is not favorable. The intersection of feminism, privilege, disenfranchisement, immigrant rights, human rights, equal representation and more is where we strive to be - and you may see "womxn" used when we are striving to represent all. 

Register to Vote

Look for members of our Social Justice & Advocacy Committee at local events and collaborating with community organizations to register voters. Voting is the first step in representation. 

Let's Discuss

Three discussions are planned to bring us all together to increase awareness and learn from each other. Discussions on Privilege, Disenfranchisement and Inter-sectional Feminism are planned for 2020. These discussions are free to attend, will be facilitated by those in our Social Justice & Advocacy Committee and will have tabletop activities for school age children. Look for the dates, times and locations on our calendar.  

Workshops

Two workshops are planned: Womxn Finding Their Voice and Political Engagement. These will be presented by and facilitated by our Social Justice & Advocacy Committee Members and are meant to be potential  stepping stones to more civic engagement. Your voice can be used to better our community. 

We are holding a space for you at the table. 

HerStory - Stories of Sonoma County Pioneers

Did you know that the local Sonoma County chapter of the NAACP was started by Alice Gray with her husband, Gilbert Gray and their partner Platt O. Williams. As the story goes, Gilbert and Platt signed up 300 members and Alice could type and that's how the organization started in Sonoma County. Alice and Gilbert are also credited with co-founding the Community Baptist Church in Santa Rosa. Eldest of their nine children, their daughter, Rev. Ann Gray Byrd, went onto be President of the Sonoma County NAACP, won their legacy award, ministered at Community Baptist Church and wrote  "Glimpses: A History of African Americans in Santa Rosa,"  published in 2011. 


Stories like these will be featured in the HerStory Book being developed now. Look for mini-folded versions highlighting female pioneers in Sonoma County who were first in their field and organization. 

More info when these will be made available to come.