"Rise Up! The Fight for Womens Suffrage," a new exhibition at the Los Altos History Museum, celebrates the 100th anniversary of U.S. women's suffrage.
The exhibition "explores the history of the suffrage movement at the national level, but also focuses on how Bay Area suffragists played an important role in winning the right to vote. It points out the obstacles women faced and the tools they used to drum up support, as well as the shortcomings of the movement and who was left out," according to a press release.
"While many women achieved the vote in 1920, it took decades longer for women and men of color to win the same right in many areas of the country," Exhibition Curator Amy Ellison stated in the release. "We want visitors to understand what a long and arduous road it was for women to be able to vote, and that the fight for equality is far from over."
Originally planned to be a larger exhibition inside the museum space at 51 S. San Antonio Road, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, plans have been scaled down and highlights will instead by displayed outdoors on the porch of the J. Gilbert Smith House. When Santa Clara County allows the museum to reopen, the exhibition may be expanded.
Los Altos is also marking the centennial with other upcoming events, including "Women on Wheels," set for Women’s Equality Day, Wednesday, Aug. 26, 3:30-5:30 p.m. Current and former female Los Altos City Council members will participate in a festive car parade through downtown, ending at the Los Altos History Museum. Members of the public can join the parade with advance registration. Dressing in the costume of a suffragette is encouraged, according to a press release.
The museum will host a Zoom panel on women's experiences in politics on Saturday, Sept. 12, at 5 p.m. titled "Elected Women Speak Up" featuring its five Council members (Mayor Jan Pepper, Vice Mayor Neysa Fligor, Councilwomen Jeannie Bruins, Lynette Lee Eng and Anita Enander). Los Altos, according to the release, is the only California city with an all-female council. A presentation by the Los Altos Youth Commission on "Challenges for the Next 100 Years" will be held in October (details to come).
More information is available at losaltoshistory.org.