National Archives News

Women’s History

Suffrage March 1913 Washington DC

Suffrage parade in Washington, DC, March 3, 1913. View in National Archives Catalog

Records in the National Archives document the great contributions that women have made to our nation. Learn about the history of women in the United States by exploring their stories through letters, photographs, film, and other primary sources. Explore the records featured here, and view selected images from the National Archives Catalog.

In 2020, the nation observed the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which prohibited the states from denying the vote on the basis of sex. The exhibit Rightfully Hers: American Women and the Vote looked beyond suffrage parades and protests to the often overlooked story behind ratification. 

In support of the centennial of the 19th Amendment, we posted several video messages from notable women sharing their personal views about the 19th Amendment and addressing the complex history and legacy of this milestone anniversary. View the entire playlist on YouTube.

Women's Rights Topics


The Equal Rights Amendment: Yesterday and Today

Written in 1921 by suffragist Alice Paul, the Equal Rights Amendment was introduced into every session of Congress between 1923 and 1972. A panel explores the proposed amendment and its implications in today's world.

10th Annual McGowan Forum on Women in Leadership: Political Campaigns

Political communicators and strategists discuss their experiences working on political campaigns on both local and national levels, the changes in opportunities and obstacles, and advice for young women looking to become more involved in politics.

Joelle Gamble Closing Remarks | National Conversations on #RightsAndJustice

Joelle Gamble, Director of National Network of Emerging Thinkers, Roosevelt Institute, shares her experience as an emerging generation.

America's First Ladies: In Service to Our Nation

First Ladies have long the power to shape societal attitudes and used their platform to advocate for important issues. This conference focuses on the First Lady as spouse of the Commander in Chief and the actions they have taken, throughout times of war and peace, to support Americans in combat, military families, and the country's veterans.

Harriet Tubman: A Woman of Courage and Vision

In celebration of the March 2017 grand opening of the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor’s Center, we join the National Park Service in presenting a panel discussion examining the life and legacy of Harriet Tubman and the ongoing preservation of her Maryland

Madam C.J. Walker in the National Archives

Madam C.J. Walker, one of the great American entrepreneurs of the early 20th century, was born to former slaves and grew up in destitution.

Women and the Supreme Court

Women’s History Month Program: The Glass Ceiling, Broken or Cracked?

Women's History Month Spotlight: National Archives Employee Adrienne Thomas

"Feminism" and Women of Color, National Conversation on #RightsAndJustice (Q&A with Soledad O'Brien)

National Conversations on Rights and Justice Women's Rights and Gender Equality

The Declaration of Independence: A Conversation with a Conservator


Historical Footage

Women and the Spirit of '76 (1976)

Decade of Our Destiny: Women—A New Force for Change (1976)

American Women and Social Change—Women at Work  (1975)

Space for Women (NASA, 1981)

Women in Defense (1941)

Women on the Warpath (1943)

Minnie Spotted Wolf

Hello Girls in France

Edith Lee Payne

AOTUS: Remembering Cokie

Ford in Focus: I’ll Race You for It!

Forward with Roosevelt: A First Lady on the Front Lines

Forward with Roosevelt: Eleanor Roosevelt's Battle to End Lynching

Forward with Roosevelt: Missy LeHand: FDR’s Right Hand Woman

Hoover Heads: Tempest in a Teapot – Lou Henry Hoover and the DePriest Tea Incident

Hoover Heads: Who is Anne Martin?

JFK Library—Archivally Speaking: Finding Inspiration in the Archives: Honoring Women at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library

JFK Library—Archivally Speaking: Personal Recollections of Corinne “Lindy” Boggs

JFK Library—Archivally Speaking: Restoring the Past in the White House: A Look at the Jacqueline Kennedy White House Restoration Project

NARAtions: The Making of Women’s Equality Day

Pieces of History: On the Basis of Sex: Equal Credit Opportunities

Pieces of History: On the Basis of Sex: Equal Pay

Pieces of History: Minnie Spotted Wolf

Pieces of History: The Hello Girls Finally Get Paid

Pieces of History: Finding the Girl in the Photograph

Pieces of History: Suffrage and Suffering at the 1913 March

   Explore more posts in Pieces of History

Reagan Library Education Blog: "Remembering the Ladies" Blog Series

Text Message: Meet Sgt. Eva Mirabal/Eah Ha Wa (Taos Pueblo); Women’s Army Corps Artist

Text Message: An Indigenous Woman’s Legal Fight After Forced Sterilization

Text Message: The Closed Door of Justice: African American Nurses and the Fight for Naval Service

Text Message: The First Woman to Fly in an Aeroplane in the United States, October 27, 1909

   Explore most posts in the Text Message

Unwritten Record: Queens of the Air: American Women Aviation Pioneers

Unwritten Record: Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Title IX with Archival Footage of Sporting Legends

Unwritten Record: International Worker’s Day and the Female Workforce

Unwritten Record: No Mail, Low Morale: The 6888th Central Postal Battalion

Unwritten Record: Their War Too: U.S. Women in the Military During WWII, part 1 and part 2

   Explore more in the Unwritten Record

Logo for Rightfully Hers exhibit

Rightfully Her: American Women and the Vote

Rightfully Hers, created for the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, looked beyond suffrage parades and protests to the often overlooked story behind ratification.

Jeannette Rankin's credentials


100th Anniversary of Jeannette Rankin as First Congresswoman

Jeannette Rankin's 1917 credentials as a Member of the House of Representatives were displayed at the National Archives in Washington, DC.


Triangle Shirtwaist Factory protest


Records of Rights

The Records of Rights exhibit in Washington, DC, and online tells the story of women's rights.


Food Conservation volunteer


The U.S. Food Administration, Women, and the Great War

Women played a key role in food conservation during World War I.


Eleanor Roosevelt at the UN


Eleanor Roosevelt and the United Nations

After leaving the White House Eleanor Roosevelt became the first woman to represent the United States as a delegate to the United Nations.


Amending America exhibit logo


Amending America: Women's Rights

Explore selected stories about civil rights and individual freedoms featured at our National Conversation on #RightsAndJustice: Women's Rights and Gender Equality in New York City.


Barbara Erickson

A People at War: Women Who Served

Although women were not allowed to participate in battle during World War II, they did serve in so-called "noncombat" missions in the Women's Auxiliary Ferrying Squadron (WAFS) and Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP).. These missions often proved to be extremely dangerous.

Selected Images