Results of national women's history poll

Date: Tue Oct 05 1999 - 15:35:07 EDT

Hello, from the National Women's History Project!

As you know, August 26 was designated as Women's Equality Day in 1971 to
commemorate the date in 1920 when women finally won the vote in the United
States. While annual celebrations are fixing that important event in the
minds of many, a national poll conducted this past August by the New
York-based Global Strategy Group revealed that 74% of Americans have yet to
hear the news.
The poll revealed that 93% cannot identify Elizabeth Cady Stanton as the
principal author of the Seneca Falls declaration that gave birth to the
women's rights movement, with only 1% accurately identifying her as a women's
rights activist. While 32% recognize Susan B. Anthony as the woman on the coin,
only 36% know her to have been a women's rights activist (51% of college
graduates, 38% of those with some college, and 23% of high school graduates).

Not surprisingly, 93% of Americans polled could not identify the decade the
women's rights movement began. Nearly half (49%) thought it was after 1900, 11%
after 1949. Almost three-quarters (72%) were unaware that husbands had full
economic control of their wives throughout much of the 19th century. Sixty
percent were unaware that women were barred from colleges until the 1840s.

Ken Burns' latest history program is "Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of
Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony" and their long, united effort
for women's rights. The staff of the NWHP have seen the program in its
entirety and endorse it as thoroughly excellent. It airs for the first time on
PBS the evenings of November 7 and 8. Part One, "Revolution," chronicles their
early lives and important roles in the struggle against slavery, the 1848 Seneca
Falls convention, and the betrayal both felt when many abolitionists abandoned
them after the Civil War. Part Two, "Failure is Impossible," recounts their
efforts to build a national women's suffrage
movement. We recommend that you mark the dates on your calendar and invite
in friends for the evening, too!

A massive publicity campaign for "Not For Ourselves Alone" is planned which
includes sending a teaching guide to every high-school history teacher in
advance of the airing. A guide for middle-school use and a coffee table book
will soon be published, too.

For further information about the poll, teaching materials related to "Not
For Ourselves Alone," or how you can help publicize the program, contact
Susan Graziano of Dan Klores Associates at (212) 685-4300 or

The National Women's HIstory Project would be pleased to introduce your
friends and family to women's history through its latest free Women's History
Catalog. Items for every age and virtually every interest are included. Send
us the person's name and mailing address, and we'll send out a free catalog

Mary Ruthsdotter
National Women's History Project

<> for information about women's history and National Women's
History Month
<> for the history of the Women's Rights Movement in the
United States

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