On this day in history, June 4, 1919, Congress passes 19th Amendment, granting women the right to vote

On this day in history, June 4, 1919, Congress passed the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote, and sent the amendments to the states for ratification.

“The right to vote of American citizens shall not be denied or revoked by the United States or any state because of their sex,” the amendment reads.

The U.S. Senate voted 56 to 25 in favor of the amendment, according to the U.S. Senate’s 100th anniversary webpage.

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Two weeks earlier, on May 21, the House of Representatives approved the amendment by a vote of 304 to 89, according to the Library of Congress website.

The amendment was then signed by President Woodrow Wilson’s Vice President, Thomas Marshall.

The 19th Amendment, which prohibited discrimination in voting laws based on sex, was passed by Congress on this day in history, June 4, 1919, and moved to states for ratification. (Ben Hastie/Media News Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images)

Many people opposed giving women the right to vote.

The website said, “Artists created political caricatures mocking suffragettes. Religious leaders spoke out from the pulpit against women’s political activism.” They attacked women participating in public life.”

In the 1860s, people began to organize locally against women’s suffrage.

“Massachusetts was home to a strong suffrage advocate and was one of the first states to organize an anti-suffrage group,” the site says.

This day in history, February. 3rd, 1870, Fifteenth Amendment approved, giving black men the right to vote

After women’s suffrage was approved by Congress, the amendment required 36 states to ratify it to add it to the constitution.

At that time, the United States had only 48 states.

Suffragists marching for the right to vote.

Women’s suffrage holding a banner proclaiming “Full suffrage for women in the states of Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and Idaho” during the Women’s Suffrage Parade in New York on May 3, 1916. (Paul Thompson/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

The three states that were the first to ratify the 19th Amendment moved quickly.

Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin all ratified the 19th Amendment on June 10, less than a week after it passed Congress, according to the National Park Service’s website.

Technically, Illinois was the first state to vote to ratify, with Wisconsin coming in second, according to the National Park Service, but the ballot had to be repeated in Illinois the following week after a clerical error was discovered. It is said that

This day in history, December. 10, 1869 Wyoming becomes the first state to allow women to vote

Then, on June 10, the Michigan legislature unanimously voted to ratify the 19th Amendment, with a total of three states ratifying it.

Six days later, on June 16, Kansas, Ohio, and New York became the next states to ratify the 19th Amendment.

Women voting for Utah

A voter filling out a ballot in early voting. On this historic day in June 1919, Congress voted in favor of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution giving women the right to vote. (George Fry/AFP via Getty Images)

By the end of July 1919, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Texas, Iowa, Missouri, and Arkansas had voted to ratify the amendment, bringing the total to 12 states.

Only one state, Georgia, voted against ratification at this point.

Georgia will eventually vote to formally ratify the 19th Amendment in 1970, according to the National Park Service website.

On this historic day, August 18, 1920, the Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution was approved, giving women the right to vote.

By the calendar year 1920, 22 of the 36 states required to ratify the amendment voted to ratify it.

By the end of January, five more states had joined the ranks, but South Carolina had “overwhelmingly” rejected the amendment.

On March 22, 1920, Washington became the 35th state to ratify the amendment, according to the NPS.

Virginia, Maryland, Mississippi, Delaware, and Louisiana all voted against ratification during this period.

vote center

On this day in history, June 4, 1919, Congress passed the 19th Amendment, beginning an effort to get 36 states to ratify it. This amendment gave women the right to vote. (St. Petersburg)

Finally, on August 18, 1920, Tennessee ratified the amendment, bringing the total to 36.

About a week later, on August 26, 1920, Secretary of State Bainbridge Colby signed ratification, adding the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution, according to the National Archives website.

Despite the ratification of the 19th Amendment, women faced the challenge of actually voting.

Ultimately, each U.S. state will ratify the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.

Four states—Arkansas, Georgia, Mississippi, and South Carolina—ratified after the voter registration deadline, preventing most women from voting in the 1920 election, the American Bar Association notes.

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Ultimately, each U.S. state will ratify the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.

The last to ratify was Mississippi, which ratified the amendment in 1984.


According to, prominent suffragist Jane Adams said, “I don’t think women are better than men.”

“We didn’t destroy the railroad, we didn’t corrupt Congress, we didn’t do many human wrongs, but we have to remember that we didn’t have the opportunity.”

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