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Suffrage letter to George Sheldon
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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When the United States Constitution was adopted in 1787, the matter of voting rights was left to the individual states. Initially, only land-owning white males enjoyed the privilege of voting in elections. In 1870, the 15th Amendment to the Constitution extended the right to vote to African Americans. The movement for women's suffrage, or the right to vote, began in 1848; a national organization seeking the vote was founded in 1890. In 1909, George Sheldon of Deerfield, Massachusetts, was solicited for his support in gathering signatures to a petition in support of women's suffrage. Women did not, however, win the right to vote until the passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution in 1920.
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