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Alice Paul born January 11

Guest Author - Carol Taller

Alice Paul was born on January 11, 1885 in Moorestown, NJ. She was best known as a leader for woman’s rights in America. Paul introduced the first equal rights amendment campaign in the United States and dedicated her life to securing equal rights for women.

Paul was born into a Quaker family from New Jersey and followed a traditional Quaker life, including the tradition that held woman and men as equals. Her father was a successful businessman and her mother was involved in the woman’s suffrage movement. Alice’s mother took her to many of the community’s meetings so Alice was introduced to the need for woman’s rights at a very early age.

She graduated from Swathmore College in 1905 and did graduate work at the New York School of Social Work. Between 1906 – 1909 she went to England where she continued her educational studies at the Universities of Birmingham and London, and assisted with the suffragist movement.

It was at this time that Paul's ideology and methods to achieve a desired goal began to change. She transformed from a traditional Quaker girl to a militant activist. She was arrested three separate times during her stay in England from her protests for the women's movement.

She continued her education and received her MA in 1907 and her PhD in 1912. At the same time, she continued to advocate for the woman’s suffrage amendment to the US Constitution. In 1913 she founded the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage with other militants, and later that group merged with the Woman’s Party to form the National Woman’s Party.

Paul helped organized marches, protests and rallies in support of the 19th Amendment. The amendment was ratified on August 26, 1920 giving woman the right to vote. The battle for this amendment lasted 72 year old battle. Paul then continued her education and obtained a law degree from Washington College of Law and a Master’s and Doctorate from American University.

Her fight for woman’s rights continued as she drafted the first equal rights amendment to the Constitution. The draft was introduced in 1923, and was finally passed in 1972.

Paul died on July 9, 1977 in Moorestown, NJ.
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Content copyright © 2014 by Carol Taller. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Carol Taller. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Vance R. Rowe for details.

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