National Archives News

National Archives Participates in Social Media March in Honor of Suffrage Exhibits

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The participants take a moment to rest after seeing “Rightfully Hers” at the National Archives. The suffrage sashes were given to the group by the National Archives Foundation. Photo by James Pritchett for the National Archives.

By Ashley Dorf  |  National Archives News

WASHINGTON, June 27, 2019 — The National Archives collaborated with the Smithsonian, the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, the Library of Congress, and the National Museum of African American History and Culture on a virtual suffrage march on June 20 to highlight three exhibitions commemorating the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage.

Using #HerVote100, social media staff shared their favorite highlights from each exhibit on Instagram and Twitter. The National Archives invited participants into our new exhibition, Rightfully Hers: American Women and the Vote

The group began on Capitol Hill at the Library of Congress, and then they walked down Pennsylvania Avenue, following in the footsteps of the suffragists who marched in 1913. They stopped at the National Archives, and completed their tour at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.

“Although it was exhausting, I was inspired by seeing all three exhibits in the same day,” said Hilary Parkinson, who manages the @usnatarchives Twitter account. “Each exhibit told the story of the struggle for suffrage through different women using different documents, and it was fascinating to see the connections between our holdings at each institution.”

“The Rightfully Hers exhibition explores the diversity of women’s suffragists and strategies that were engaged in the struggle to ultimately win ratification of the 19th Amendment, as well as beyond 1920 to look at the diverse bases upon which women were denied the vote and what it ultimately took for them to win their voting rights,” said curator Corinne Porter.

Rightfully Hers is divided into sections based on five questions related to women’s suffrage. It includes the original 19th Amendment, a landmark victory for voting rights. It also highlights the struggles of various groups of women who were still unable to vote, based on factors like race, ethnicity and location.

“We wanted our exhibit to recognize the reality that the 19th Amendment did not give all women the right to vote,” Porter said.

At the Library of Congress, curator Janice Ruth introduced Shall Not Be Denied: Women Fight for the Vote focuses on highlighting different states both famous and lesser-known figures that helped shape the path toward giving women the right to vote. Artifacts include personal document from suffragettes like Susan B. Anthony and documents from organizations like the National Woman’s Party. The exhibit covers the time before the Seneca Falls Convention through the legacy after the passing of the 19th Amendment.

Curator Kate Clarke Lemay introduced Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. The exhibit depicts the lengthy journey to women’s suffrage through portraits of figures that helped shaped women’s suffrage, focusing on the diverse nature of the women that contributed to the fight for the vote. 

The one-day campaign attracted a strong following on Twitter as the organizations posted to Twitter and Instagram. Over 4,500 total tweets used the hashtag #HerVote100.

The National Archives will continue highlighting the anniversary of the 19th Amendment on social media through the #19ForThe19th Instagram campaign. The campaign features 19 weeks of accomplished women in history, and themes range from “Hidden Heroines” to “Women in Government.”


Rightfully Hers runs through January 3, 2021, in the Lawrence O’Brien Gallery at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC. Admission is free and open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. 

Additionally, the exhibit will be complemented by a traveling exhibit called One Half of the People: Advancing Equality for Women; pop-up exhibits for schools and other venues; an active social media campaign; and robust digital engagement activities on our websites and other platforms.

The National Archives will also host a range of public and education programs, including lectures, panel discussions, and other special events centered on the 19th Amendment and powerful women and their roles in our nation and its history. For a full list of future scheduled events, see the National Archives Calendar of Events.

Rightfully Hers: American Women and the Vote is presented in part by the National Archives Foundation, the National Archives' non-profit partner organization, through the support of Unilever, Pivotal Ventures, Carl M. Freeman Foundation in honor of Virginia Allen Freeman, AARP, AT&T, Ford Motor Company Fund, Facebook, Barbara Lee Family Foundation Fund at the Boston Foundation, Google, HISTORY ®, and Jacqueline B. Mars. Additional support provided by the Bernstein Family Foundation and the Hearst Foundations.