100 years of expectations

Zoom Bomb
Courtesy of the Library of Congress
California suffragists traveled east to extend their advocacy to the federal level after winning rights in their own state.


Aug. 27 update: This article has been corrected and updated to include Nellie Meyer, the first woman superintendent of the Mountain View-Los Altos High School District, who joined the district last year.

A century ago, the 19th Amendment was ratified by a margin of one vote in the legislature of the 36th of 36 states that were needed at that time for approval. It’s hard to believe now that the decades-long struggle of women to gain political equality with men was ended by such a narrow margin.

In living rooms and theaters, the vote was won

Rise Up
Courtesy of Mountain View Historical Association
California voted to give women voting rights in 1911 after years of woman-led compaigning.

You can still walk past the Masonic Hall in downtown Mountain View and imagine the suffrage speeches that drew listeners more than a century ago.

Women's Work: Advocacy that doesn’t end

Reed & Lave
Courtesy of Los Altos History Museum Collection
Jane Reed, left, and Penny Lave joined a growing tradition of women leaders in Los Altos when they were elected to the City Council.

Los Altos resident Vicki Reeder and other members of the Los Altos Women’s Caucus have been readying “suffrage outfits” this week for a socially distanced car parade scheduled 3:30 p.m. today. They’re commemorating the work a century ago that won women the vote, and celebrating the political activity that followed.

Los Altos events celebrate 100 years of women’s suffrage

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Gary Hedden/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos Mayor Jan Pepper promotes the upcoming car parade commemorating a century of women’s suffrage.

Local groups have scheduled a series of events commemorating the centennial of women gaining the right to vote under the banner “Los Altos Celebrates 100 Years of Women’s Suffrage.”

Museum celebrates women’s suffrage with outdoor exhibition

Rise Up
Courtesy of Los Altos History Museum
An ongoing exhibit outdoors at the Los Altos History Museum puts local suffrage advocacy in a broader context.

Women fought for, and won, the right to vote 100 years ago. The Los Altos History Museum is set to celebrate the milestone with an outdoor exhibition, “Rise Up! The Fight for Women’s Suffrage,” on display beginning Aug. 20.

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