Story of Suffrage at Ocean Museum

“Votes For Women: the Story Of Suffrage” – a new exhibit at the Township of Ocean Historical Museum – celebrates the 100th anniversary of women gaining the right to vote.

“New Jersey has an interesting story to tell. Many know of Susan Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton but many are not aware of how interesting our local history is on this topic,” Exhibit Chairperson Peggy Dellinger said.

Of all of the exhibits done by the museum over the years, Dellinger said she believes this one will generate the most interest. The 1920 election became the first United States Presidential Election in which women were permitted to vote in every state.

“It touches a very responsive chord with people. They recognize, learn and acknowledge just what the status of women was 100 years ago and how much was sacrificed to make this profound change,” Dellinger said.

Giving women the vote probably expanded democracy more than any other single act in history,” she said.

Many items in the exhibit are from the private suffrage collection of township resident Arlene Lutz.

“She loaned us artifacts and documents and some lovely posters. Some of our own archives are also used to help tell the story,” Dellinger said.

She said there is also a wonderful model jail cell with suffragettes in it.

The exhibit not only focuses on the national suffrage movement but also breaks it down to a local level.

“We tell the bigger story of suffrage as a context and then break it down into more specific stories about suffrage,” Dellinger said.

The grand opening of the exhibit is Sun., July 28 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Eden Woolley House, 703 Deal Rd. The exhibit will run during regular museum hours through 2020.

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