Posted by: Suzanne Craig Robertson on Jul 1, 2020

Journal Issue Date: July/August 2020

Journal Name: Vo. 56 No. 7

In August 1920, the nation’s attention was on Tennessee. The 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, granting women the right to vote, had passed at the federal level a year earlier, and was making its way through state legislatures for ratification. Final approval required 36 states to approve the amendment. The effort had stalled at 35. Tennessee presented the best hope for ratification. And it delivered. The final vote came on Aug. 18, 1920.

There are many resources and related articles on the TBA’s 19th Amendment Centennial page at

There you will find these and more:

  • “Tennessee’s Vote for Women Decided the Nation: The Final Battle,” by Paula F. Casey
  • The Trailblazers,” by Suzanne Craig Robertson
  • Read the minutes of the 1918 TBA annual convention where, after years of opposition by many members of the bar, President Col. E. Watkins urged the group to support woman suffrage. 
  • “118 Men Before Her: Meet the TBA’s First Woman President, Pamela L. Reeves”
  • “Pioneers in the Legal Profession: Some of the First African-American and Women Lawyers in Tennessee,” by Dwight Aarons  
  • “50 Years of Pioneers: Early Women in Tennessee Law,” by Suzanne Craig Robertson 
  • A link to the Ken Burns’ film, Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony
  • More resources from the Tennessee State Library & Archives, the Tennessee State Museum, the Hermitage Hotel, Tennessee Woman’s Suffrage Heritage Trail, and The Tennessean’s photo gallery.