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"She the People: Votes for Women" premiering Aug. 17
--From a press release
2020-08-16

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It's incredible that just a century ago, American women had no voice in democracy. It took over 70 years of campaigns, marches, protests and arrests to win the constitutional amendment — and even longer for all women to be able to exercise that right. For the 100-year anniversary of the 19th Amendment ratification we open the vaults of the Smithsonian collections to reveal the story of suffrage through actual artifacts from the fight. Witness the decades-long struggle by heroic women who fought to claim their rights as citizens when SHE THE PEOPLE: VOTES FOR WOMEN premieres tonight Monday, Aug. 17 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Smithsonian Channel.

They wore skirts and hats while making signs and sewing sashes. Three years before they won the vote, activists picketing outside the White House were arrested for blocking traffic and imprisoned in the rat-infested Occoquan Workhouse. Demanding to be treated as political prisoners, they went on a hunger strike and were tortured with force feedings and beatings. Shedding new light on the brutality of the fight, and the diversity of women who went into battle, SHE THE PEOPLE: VOTES FOR WOMEN tells the story through rarely seen footage, expert opinions, and dozens of historic objects from the Smithsonian Institution collections. The Smithsonian has dubbed 2020 "The Year of the Woman." The legacy of their quest continues to shape our democracy.

SHE THE PEOPLE: VOTES FOR WOMEN opens Smithsonian vaults to reveal treasures from the fight, including the table on which the very first call for suffrage was written, before the Civil War; the trading card photos sold by formerly enslaved Sojourner Truth to support her mesmerizing speeches calling for equal rights; and the pen that changed the United States Constitution by ratifying the 19th Amendment. Like portals to the past, these objects unlock remarkable untold stories.

SHE THE PEOPLE: VOTES FOR WOMEN is produced by The Biscuit Factory and executive produced by Molly Hermann and Rob Lyall. Linda Goldman and David Royle serve as executive producers for Smithsonian Channel.


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