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New York State was key to the national movement for women’s suffrage. From the city streets to the country lanes, came the leaders advocating for women to get the vote. New York was the first of the eastern states that legalized suffrage in 1917.
On June 4, 1919, the U.S. Senate passed the 19th Amendment by two votes over its two-thirds required majority, 56-25. The amendment was then sent to the states for ratification. It was ratified on August 26, 1920.
Achieving this victory required a lengthy and difficult struggle amid internal conflicts and international warfare. Beginning in the mid-19th century, generations of woman suffrage supporters lectured, marched, lobbied and faced imprisonment to achieve what many, including then-President Wilson, considered a radical change to the Constitution.