Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Rightfully Ours: How Women Won the Vote, 21 Activities

Rightfully Ours: How Women Won the Vote, 21 Activities

Kerrie Logan Hollihan
For ages 9 and up
Chicago Review Press, 2012   ISBN: 978-1883052898

These days many girls and women take the freedoms that they have for granted. They go to school and to work, buy homes, and vote in elections, and they do all of these things forgetting perhaps that not that long ago these were freedoms that females in America did not have.

Though the Declaration of Independence talks about how “all men are created equal,” it does not mention women at all. The document says that Americans have “certain inalienable rights” and that “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” should be theirs. Unfortunately, American women were not given these rights when the country was being formed, and so a handful of ladies set about working towards getting these rights for future generations.

Though many women in America were content to live as their mothers and grandmothers had done, others were not. They wanted to get educated, to be able to own property, and to have a say in the decisions that were made regarding their children. They wanted to have a voice in government, a voice that came with the right to vote.

Lucy Stone was just such a woman. Her father did not believe that girls needed an education, but she wanted to go to college. Lucy worked as a teacher and did many other jobs until she had saved enough to be able to pay for college herself. When she finished her studies, she refused to “get a schoolhouse.” Instead she wanted to become a lecturer who spoke out “against slavery and for women.” The life she chose was a hard one and she was often treated badly, but she did not give up.

Neither did Elizabeth Cady Stanton or Susan B. Anthony. These women and many others worked tirelessly for the rights of women, daring to speak their minds and battling against society and the government to be heard and respected. They spoke at meetings and gatherings. They marched in the streets, picketed the White House, and some were even arrested and thrown into prison.

In this excellent book, the author combines an well written and interesting text with photos and activities to give readers a comprehensive picture of the history of the women’s rights and suffrage movement. The twenty-one activities in the book give readers the opportunity to experience history in a hands-on way, helping them to better understand the challenges the suffragists face, and the world that they lived in.