The League of Women Voters of the Hamptons invites all to attend a birthday party, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the New York State League of Women Voters, to be feted with cake and a toast on Monday, Nov. 18, 7 p.m. at Bridgehampton’s Hampton Library at 2478 Main Street.

The State League was formed on November 19, 1919, by the 400 delegates gathered in Utica at the 51st convention of the New York State Woman Suffrage Party, just as the National League was formed three months later, on February 14, 1920, by the delegates of the National American Woman Suffrage Party, gathered at convention in Chicago.

Both state and national Leagues, and the eventual hundreds of local Leagues throughout the nation—all based on a strict non-partisan policy—were formed to educate women on the issues, at a time when they were close to receiving the vote nationwide with the ratification of the 19th Amendment in August 1920 after a 72-year struggle.

New York State women, it should be noted, won the vote in 1917, following the granting of suffrage in many Western states, and influencing other states to follow suit.

For the program on November 18, members of the League’s 100th anniversary celebration committee—Estelle Gellman, Barbara McClancy, Martha Potter, Judi Roth, Cathy Peacock, Susan Wilson, and Arlene Hinkemeyer, Chair—will announce the other 100th anniversary celebratory events to be held during 2020, and will present the many domestic and international issues tackled by the Leagues through the decades.

Did you know that it took the League 40 years to get permanent personal registration in New York State? Before that you had to re-register to vote every year!

Did you know that in 1964 President Lyndon Johnson and Governor Nelson Rockefeller declared September 13 as Women Voters Week and September 17 as LWV Day?

Did you know about all the work the League has done to achieve other election reforms? Clean air and water and the bottle bill? Education funding and judicial reform?

The League urges you to come learn about its proud history and bright future, and enjoy birthday party refreshments.

Beth Young
Beth Young is an award-winning local journalist who has been covering the East End since the 1990s. She began her career at the Sag Harbor Express and, after receiving her Masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, has reported for the Southampton Press, the East Hampton Press and the Times/Review Media Group. She founded the East End Beacon website in 2013, and a print edition in 2017. Beth was born and raised on the North Fork. In her spare time, she tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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