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The National Woman's Party and Suffrage for African-American Women

Part B: Essay

Directions:  Write a well-organized essay that includes an introduction, several paragraphs, and a conclusion.  Use evidence from at least five documents in the body of the essay.  Support your response with relevant facts, examples, and details.  Include additional outside information.

Historical Context:

Although the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, adopted in 1920, was designed to give all women suffrage, many black women were denied this right. Prior to 1920, black women were often denied full participation in the suffrage movement because suffrage leaders feared they would lose the support of white southerners.  After the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, black women in the South who tried to vote experienced physical and economic intimidation, poll taxes, educational and character requirements, and they were excluded from Democratic party primaries.  So the fate of black women women's voting rights after 1920 remained an important political issue within the women's movement.  


Using information from the documents and your knowledge of United States history, write an essay in which you:

  • Discuss the issues facing African-American women living in the South after the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment

  • Compare and contrast the views of African-American women and National Woman's Party leaders about how to address the disenfranchisement of African-American women

  • Discuss the criticism of the National Woman's Party and the organization's response.


In your essay, be sure to:

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