SMHM All is Possible Image 1024x1024 664x664 - All Is Possible: Women's Suffrage in California

March 7, 2020 
to
June 6, 2020

The Santa Monica History Museum is excited to announce the opening of their latest exhibition, “All Is Possible: Women’s Suffrage in California.” The exhibition explores the history of the local, state, and national suffrage movements to mark the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which granted women in America the right to vote. It will run March 7 to June 6 at 1350 7th Street, Santa Monica, with a ticketed opening celebration on March 5 from 6-8pm.

The exhibition’s title was inspired by Los Angeles activist Caroline Severance’s motto, “Nothing is impossible for organized womanhood.” The suffrage movement’s success depended in large part on the groundswell of state initiatives and the organization of local women’s clubs at the turn of the century. As the sixth state to allow women to vote in 1911, California served as a turning point, with a population large enough to double the eligible women voters in the country.

The museum will display photographs and artifacts from local women’s clubs along with contemporary illustrations from publications such as Puck. Visitors will also be able to view artifacts from suffrage leaders, including never-before-seen personal letters from Alice Stone Blackwell and a Miramar Hotel guestbook signed by Susan B. Anthony and Reverend Anna Shaw during their 1895 visit to Santa Monica to rally support for a statewide suffrage ballot. Replicas of suffrage banners, ribbons, sashes, and china will also be on view.

“While the 19th Amendment was a landmark, it was only one element of the struggles for equal rights that took place at local, state and national levels,” says Sara Crown, Archivist at the Santa Monica History Museum. “In this exhibition, we hope to tell the ongoing story of suffrage by illuminating the efforts of all women to establish their rights.” The exhibition was co-curated by Sara Crown and Anne Wallentine.

“This story is extremely relevant, even 100 years on,” says John Klopping, Museum Manager at the Santa Monica History Museum. “The struggle for equal rights is by no means finished, so there’s something for everyone to learn from this exhibition.”

The museum and exhibit are open to the public Tuesdays and Thursdays noon to 8:00 PM, and Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. The museum is closed Sundays and Mondays. General admission for adults is $10.00 ($15 for 2 adults) and $5.00 for seniors & students. Veterans, active-duty military, children 12 and under, and Santa Monica History Museum members receive free admission. Please direct questions to John Klopping, Museum Manager, at (310) 395-2290 or [email protected].

SMHM Working Womens Picket 1917 via LOC 2 - All Is Possible: Women's Suffrage in California
Courtesy Library of Congress, Manuscript Division
SMHM Woman Here Registered 1995 via LWVSM 2 - All Is Possible: Women's Suffrage in California
Courtesy League of Women Voters of Santa Monica