Rightfully Ours: How Women Won the Vote, 21 Activities

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Winner of:
VOYA'S Nonfiction Honor List 2013

Though the Declaration of Independence stated that “all men are created equal,” women and girls in the early days of the United States had few rights—their lives were controlled by their husbands or fathers. Married women could not own property, and few girls were taught more than reading and simple math. Not one woman could vote, but that would change with the tireless efforts of Lucretia Mott, Lucy...

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Rightfully Ours: How Women Won the Vote, 21 Activities

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Winner of:
VOYA'S Nonfiction Honor List 2013

Though the Declaration of Independence stated that “all men are created equal,” women and girls in the early days of the United States had few rights—their lives were controlled by their husbands or fathers. Married women could not own property, and few girls were taught more than reading and simple math. Not one woman could vote, but that would change with the tireless efforts of Lucretia Mott, Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Sojourner Truth, Susan B. Anthony, Carrie Chapman Catt, Lucy Burns, Alice Paul, and thousands of others across the nation.

Rightfully Ours tells of the century-long struggle for women’s suffrage in the United States. In addition to its lively narrative, this history includes a time line, online resources, and hands-on activities that will give readers a sense of the everyday lives of the suffragists. Children will:

·        create a banner for suffrage

·        host a Victorian tea

·        stage a “readers’ theater” for women’s rights

·        feel what it was like to wear a corset

·        bake a cake from the Woman Suffrage Cook Book

·        and more

Through it all, readers will gain a richer appreciation for not only the women who secured the right to fully participate in American democracy, but also why they must never take that right for granted.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“[A] fine history of how women got the vote in the United States...[it] offers a powerful lesson in the vindication of the rights of women.”  —Kirkus Reviews

“Lively and gently instructive.”  —Asbury Park Press

“An excellent, readable introduction to an important topic.”  —School Library Journal 

Children's Literature - Sharon Salluzzo
Readers will gain a sense of the long struggle for woman's suffrage in the United States when they peruse the time line that includes key events between 1776 and 1923. Each of the following ten chapters focuses on a person or on events that were important to moving the cause along to victory. There are twenty one activities intended to engage the reader. Some connect the reader with the time period. Others are directly connected to the suffrage movement. They include soap-making; the recipe for Lucy Stone Blackwell's Waterlily Eggs; and designing a Suffragist postcard. Readers will become acquainted with Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Anna Howard Shaw, Carrie Chapman Catt, and Alice Paul. Unfortunately, in presenting this overview of suffrage, there appear to be some inaccuracies. There are no citations, and the author does not make a distinction between fact and assumption. For example, on page 29 the author states: "Anthony never mentioned her feelings in her diary, but she must have felt some regret that she did not make her romantic feelings for him known." Upon what does the author present this conjecture? On page 55, the author attributes a quote to Anthony that appears out of character for her. Source notes would have made this book more credible. The page layout can be confusing. More than once, a sentence is interrupted with an activity on the next page. The reader needs to turn the page in order to finish the sentence. Some of the reprinted documents are very grainy. I read this as an uncorrected proof and perhaps the black & white photos and documents will be clearer in the finished copy. There will also be an index, which was not available at this time. Reviewer: Sharon Salluzzo
School Library Journal
Gr 5 Up—A fact-filled account of the struggle for women's suffrage. The first three chapters focus on notable activists Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Susan B. Anthony. Hollihan recounts how this battle was inexorably tied to the antislavery movement and the role played by women of color in both movements, including Harriett Tubman, Sojourner Truth, and Ida Wells-Barnett. Women's organizations divided over the 15th amendment that gave African American men the right to vote. The years of the Gilded Age and the early 20th century found new educational opportunities for women and opportunities to write and to speak and spread the message. Carrie Chapman Catt, Alice Paul, and Lucy Burns used new tactics including civil disobedience to draw attention to their cause. Decades of diligent work saw fruition in the passage of the 19th amendment, using the exact words written by Susan B. Anthony in 1878. Hollihan concludes this informative and edifying volume with the statement that "Equal rights for women are not yet the law of the land in the United States." Activities, which make the suffragist years come alive, are educational and fun and related to chapter materials. Included are detailed instructions for making soap and an oil lamp, making and wearing a corset, china painting, and designing suffragist postcards and signs. Captioned black-and-white photographs and reproductions and sidebars enhance each chapter. An excellent, readable introduction to an important topic.—Patricia Ann Owens, Illinois Eastern Community Colleges
Kirkus Reviews
A timeline that starts in January 1777, when Mary Katherine Goddard printed the first full copy of the Declaration of Independence, and ends with the women's suffrage amendment passed in 1920 opens this fine history of how women got the vote in the United States. Hollihan covers the eight decades of struggle for women's suffrage with plentiful illustrations, numerous sidebars and a straightforward ability to explain words and ideas in context. The stories, struggles and great work of Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony and Alice Paul are laid out, as well as Angelina and Sarah Grimké, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Jane Addams and many other women famed and lesser-known. Hollihan is particularly good at tracing, in language middle-graders can understand, how little control women had over their lives and persons. She also does not gloss over the deep divisions between white women and African-American women, and between the conservative and radical movements within women's suffrage associations. The only downside is the activities, which range from slightly silly (dress up like an ancient Greek for suffrage!) to simply wrong (cake mix does not taste as good as a cake made from scratch). For young readers not quite ready for Ann Bausum's masterly With Courage and Cloth (2004), the survey offers a powerful lesson in the vindication of the rights of women. (resources, index [not seen]) (Nonfiction. 8-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781883052898
  • Publisher: Chicago Review Press, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 8/1/2012
  • Series: For Kids Series
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 663,008
  • Age range: 9 years
  • Lexile: 1020L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.30 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Kerrie Logan Hollihan is the author of Elizabeth I, the People’s Queen, Theodore Roosevelt for Kids, and Isaac Newton and Physics for Kids.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 16, 2014

    "Rightfully Ours, How Women Won the Vote" is a fantast

    "Rightfully Ours, How Women Won the Vote" is a fantastic book for young girls showing them how strong, determined women finally won the right to vote. It spans the 144 years of struggle women went through before the 19th Amendment was passed. I think this is important reading for young girls to show them what can be done if given the desire and perseverance to find a solution. Thank you Kerrie for writing this and to Lucy Stone, Sara and Angelina Grimke, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B Anthony, Harriet Tubman, Sojourner Truth, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Frances Willard, Matilda Gage, Alice Paul, Lucy Burns and so many more amazing women
    who forged through life always trying to make it a better place for WOMEN.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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