Document 20: “To the Women of Colorado,” Colorado Equal Suffrage Association Leaflet 3, 1893 (Women. Suffrage. Newspaper clippings), Western History Collection, The Denver Public Library, Denver, Colorado.
Like their opponents, Colorado suffrage activists used leaflets to communicate their arguments and, in fact, developed an entire series of leaflets.
This pro-suffrage leaflet, the third in the series, addressed Colorado women, commenting upon the current economic distress and making arguments from both equality and differerence.
To the Women of Colorado.
Women of Colorado, do you know the opportunity that is before you this fall? Do you know that on November 7 the voters of the state will decide whether or not you are to have the ballot hereafter? Do you know that there is a possibility you may rise to legal equality with man? Are you working for this great end? Are you alive to its importance? Are you willing to be classed politically with idiots, criminals and insane, when your own enfranchisement is offered you? Have you no interest in good government, in your town, your country, your state? Have you no interest in the making of good laws, and the election of good men to execute them? Does not your heart swell with patriotism as you see the best interests of Colorado struck down and our fair state lying prostrate under the blow? Do you not wish your voice to count hereafter in the tremendously important choice of the men who are to guard the interests of Colorado in congress? Are you not interested in politics when in spite of the strictest economy want creeps into the household, when the mother is forced to pinch and save and deny her children; when the self-supporting woman sees her wages reduced, and when on every side arises a long, low undertone of sorrow, the cry of the suffering poor? No matter how hardly economic conditions press upon men, except in the cases of a few favored ones they press harder on women. It is the duty of every true daughter of Colorado to come to the rescue; to bend every
power of mind and heart to the solving of the social problems that surround us. Charity can never do it. Only right laws, rightly executed, can reform social conditions. The ballot is the greatest power and protection of this day and age. All that renders it valuable to men will make it valuable to women. If the circumstances of your life have been such that you have never seen the need of it, it is your duty to aid your less fortunate sisters to attain it. Think of the 16,000 self-supporting women in Colorado. Awake from your indifference. Send for literature; solicit the vote of every man of your acquaintance. Nine out of ten will vote for it if we but ask them. And be assured that in helping to carry Colorado for suffrage this fall you are helping to make history. New Mexico and Arizona[A] are trembling in the balance. Suffrage sentiment there is strong. Should Colorado grant it, they will come into the union with equal suffrage in their constitutions. Should Colorado grant it, the victory in Kansas is assured in 1894[B]. With five great western states in line, one generation will see the women of American enfranchised. Great issues are at stake. Drop all other things from now till November 7 to work for suffrage. Nothing else is so important. Every vote counts, and every vote you make will just so much hasten the day of full liberty for women. Colorado Non-Partisan Equal Suffrage Association, Room 11 Opera House Block.
A. Arizona only granted women the right to vote in 1912, while New Mexico held out until the 19th Amendment in 1920 made woman suffrage the law of the land.
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B. Kansas only granted women the right to vote in 1912.
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