March is Women’s History Month, and in South Dakota the Her Vote. Her Voice. campaign is busy with a funding initiative that brings awareness to historical and modern-day women’s history. One of the campaign activities is the collection and preservation of suffrage artifacts.
The South Dakota State Historical Society is seeking archival records and artifacts documenting the women’s suffrage movement in South Dakota. The women’s suffrage movement was a decades-long fight to win the right to vote for women in the United States. The fight for suffrage is represented in numerous ways through different types of historical materials.
Examples of suffrage materials include, but are not limited to, banners, signs/posters, sashes, ribbons, recordings of suffrage songs, books/booklets/pamphlets, letters (correspondence), photographs, photo albums, scrapbooks, or other documents.
Individuals or groups wanting to donate archival or museum materials relating to women’s suffrage to the State Historical Society should contact archives and museum representatives Matthew T. Reitzel (archives) at 605-773-3615 or Matthew.Reitzel@state.sd.us or Katy Schmidt (museum) at 605-773-6013 or Katy.Schmidt@state.sd.us. Reitzel and Schmidt will coordinate all donations of materials to the State Historical Society.
“The women’s suffrage movement played a pivotal role in the history of our nation and state,” said Jay Vogt, director of the State Historical Society. “Being able to add records and objects from this important period in history would be a welcome addition to the archives and museum collections at the Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre.”
Archival collections and objects can help explain historic events that define women’s suffrage, which is why the delegation of the Her Vote. Her Voice. campaign felt it was imperative that these efforts are financially supported by the men and women of South Dakota.
In addition to donations of women’s suffrage artifacts, the society is collecting contributions that will be used to properly process, preserve, and store the items collected. For more information on how to donate, go to https://www.hervotehervoice.org or call 605-773-6003.
Editor’s note: A women’s suffrage parade takes place at Erwin in Kingsbury County in the early 1900s. (Photo courtesy South Dakota State Historical Society-Archives)
Her Vote. Her Voice. is a grassroots movement of the South Dakota Historical Society Foundation and the office of Governor Kristi Noem. Governor Noem appointed a group of 16 delegates to organize a communications center for the collection and dissemination of information about South Dakota events, plans, and resources for the centennial celebration of the passage of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote. This diverse group of nonpartisan professionals brings relevance to the historical topic while connecting people to the present issue: history is happening and still being made today. Funds raised by the Her Vote. Her Voice. campaign will support women’s history preservation through projects defined by the South Dakota State Historical Society and Historical Society Foundation. For more information on how you can help, go to https://www.hervotehervoice.org or call 605-773-6003.
About the South Dakota State Historical Society
The South Dakota State Historical Society is a division of the Department of Education. The State Historical Society, an Affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is headquartered at the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center in Pierre. The center houses the society’s world-class museum, the archives, and the historic preservation, publishing, and administrative/development offices. Call 605-773-3458 or visit www.history.sd.gov for more information. The society also has an archaeology office in Rapid City; call 605-394-1936 for more information.
The South Dakota Historical Society Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and serves as the fundraising partner of the South Dakota State Historical Society. The Foundation assists in securing funds to collect, preserve, research, exhibit and interpret history for the life-long education and enrichment of present and future generations. For more info go to www.sdhsf.org or call 605-773-6003.