By Kevin Winter
When women were advocating for their right to vote, they had to get the support of the men. Because without the support of the men, women would have never gotten the right to vote. This book tells the story of how women of the National American Woman Suffrage Association convinced some of the most powerful men in New York to found an organization of men for suffrage, the Men’s League for Woman Suffrage. And it tells of how woman ran the league, got men to do its bidding, and convinced the power brokers that it was finally time to give woman the vote.
This book is from a very New York perspective, and that is fine, but it is from such an upper-class perspective that I find it a bit dull. Brooke Kroeger focuses on the upper-class men and women who worked to get women the right to vote and tried to get it in the hands of the larger country. But by focusing on just the rich and upper-class, the book kind of ignores the thoughts, ideas, and any contributions that women, and men, of the middle- and lower-classes might have made. A decent attempt to put the New York story in the larger nationwide picture.
The Suffragents won the Gold Medal in US History in the 2018 Independent Publisher Book Awards and was a finalist for the 2018 Sally and Morris Lasky Prize, presented by the Center for Political History at Lebanon Valley College. Brooke’s “Summer Camp Newsletters” (with photos and often video) and Facebook posts from book-related appearances. Reviews, notices, and articles about her books under their titles here. National History Day contestants, please read this.
Next up: 2019: UCLA Law Conference on Food and Animal Rights: February 23. Scarsdale Women’s Club, March 13. National Women’s Republican Club, May 15.