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APSU commemorating women’s suffrage anniversary with year of special events

 A model of the proposed Clarksville statue honoring the 19th amendment.

CLARKSVILLE, TN  – On the unbearable hot morning of Aug. 26, 1920, anyone fanning themselves with that day’s Nashville Tennessean newspaper saw a frontpage photo of Gov. A. H. Roberts signing the state’s passage of the 19th Amendment. The historic image capped what Montgomery County Historian Eleanor Williams later called “one of the most remarkable and successful nonviolent, civil rights efforts the world had ever seen.”

“The suffragists were harassed, attacked by mobs; and thrown in jail,” Williams wrote for the Montgomery County Historical Society website. “They re-emphasized the importance of the most fundamental democratic values – the right to vote and that a peaceful political change was possible.”

During those difficult, early years, a Clarksville lawyer named Austin Peay supported the effort by joining the Tennessee Men’s League in November 1914. This year, in the lead up to the 100th anniversary of that amendment, the University that now bears his name will host a series of events to commemorate the historic milestone.

Several events are still in the planning stage and will be announced later, but an initial listing includes the following:

Several other University departments are developing events to commemorate the anniversary. Information on those events will available soon at www.apsu.edu/news.                            

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