July 29, 2020 INTRODUCTION

Celebrating the Nineteenth Amendment in the Time of a Pandemic

By Judge M. Margaret McKeown

As we gear up to celebrate the centennial of the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment, a little history is in order. Just over a century ago, the 1918 influenza pandemic swept across the United States and threatened to upend decades of suffragist efforts to achieve victory in the battle for the Nineteenth Amendment. We can learn from the suffragists, who did not let the pandemic slow their momentum, and draw inspiration from the early women judges—who were suffragists, too—who persevered in the face of formidable challenges.

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