It was women who first picketed the White House for a political cause. In 1917, they held banners and signs calling for suffrage for women. They wanted the right to vote.
These suffragists were continuing a protest that had begun in 1848. Elizabeth Cady Stanton helped found the suffrage movement. Her friend Susan B. Anthony shaped it. They would both live long enough to see women gain the vote in a few states. But it would take another generation to finish the campaign. Among those activists were Carrie Chapman Catt, who took a disciplined and moderate approach, and Alice Paul, whose confrontational style led to picketing the White House.
The fight to achieve the vote was long and hard. Suffragists followed both moderate and militant paths. But they shared the belief that women were citizens of the United States. And that meant they had a right to vote.
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