The Ladies' Tea Guild

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Celebrate 100 years of California women's right to vote!

Chicago Woman's Suffrage parade marching
costume, 1916.  Library of Congress.
California was one of the early western states that paved the way for the national amendment, and California's woman's suffrage amendment was passed on October 10, 1911 after many years of work and education on the part of the state's suffrage supporters.  This wonderful centennial anniversary is being marked all over the state throughout 2011, and the celebrations are especially numerous this month, the anniversary month of the event.  The South Bay Ladies' Tea Guild will be celebrating in San Jose this coming weekend!  Gentlemen and well-behaved children welcome to attend. 

Date: Sat., October 8; noon march, tea at 1 p.m.
Location: march from the Knox-Goodrich Building @ 1st and S. Santa Clara St.; tea at Satori Tea Bar in San Pedro Square.
Cost: $7 per person (for a "Votes for Women" sash and to pay our re-enactor); pay for your own tea and refreshments.
Suggested Costume: day dress from the 1840s through 1911, "suffragettes."

We'll be meeting in front of the Knox-Goodrich Building, dating from 1889, that was built by one of San Jose's most prominent woman's suffrage supporters, Sarah Knox-Goodrich.  She founded San Jose's Woman's Suffrage Association, held suffrage meetings in this building, and displayed banners that read "Taxation Without Representation is Tyranny!" from her windows when holiday parades marched past her building.  Those who R.S.V.P. and send their event fee by Thursday, October 6th will receive a "Votes for Women" sash copied from an original in the Smithsonian, and then we'll walk from the Knox-Goodrich Building to Satori Tea Bar in San Pedro Square, where we'll listen to a re-enactor give a speech as Clara Foltz, California's first female lawyer (who trained and practiced in San Jose in her early career), who wrote the amendment to the California constitution giving women the right to vote.  Then, after we've sung some suffrage songs, we'll go into Satori Tea Bar for tea and refreshments.

Please R.S.V.P. and send the event fee (by mail or PayPal) by Thursday, October 6th so I can make a sash for you!  You can e-mail southbayladiesteaguild (at) yahoo (dot) com to R.S.V.P. or for more information. 

The Woman's Suffrage movement in the United States began around 1840 when women were barred from participating in anti-slavery meetings and reform groups because of their gender.  Early reformers realized that woman's social and political subjugation -- plus the fact that under the law, married women practically didn't exist at all -- was similar to racial slavery in many ways, and the fact that they had no say in the law of the land made it far too easy for lawmakers to make unjust laws where women were concerned.  The movement lasted around 70 years and resulted in a gradual move towards giving women the vote with full voting rights (the same as men) in several (western) states giving their women full suffrage before the passing of the 19th Amendment in 1920, which extended the vote to all female U.S. citizens. 


Lelia's Tea Ware said...

What a great idea to have a local women's tea guild. I like the old fashioned feel of your blog, the design is welcoming and unique.

South Bay Ladies' Tea Guild said...

Thanks for visiting, Lelia! We've had a lot of fun over the years, and learned quite a bit, too.

I'm glad you like the old-fashioned feel of the blog. "Welcoming" and "unique" is just what I want my guests to feel when they visit. I'll be taking a look at your blog, too!

Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast,
Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa round,
And, while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn
Throws up a steamy column, and the cups
That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each,
So let us welcome peaceful evening in.
-- William Cowper (1731-1800)
"The Winter Evening" (Book Four), _The Task_ (1784)