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Women's History Month: Wilhelmina Kekelaokalaninui Widemann Dowsett
Women’s History Month

Women's History Month: Wilhelmina Kekelaokalaninui Widemann Dowsett

From the COLLECTION: Meet women through history during March series
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AAUW

The local chapter of the American Association of University Women celebrate 100 years of the woman's right to vote.

Wilhelmina Kekelaokalaninui Widemann Dowsett

After the annexation of Hawaii to the United States, Dowsett became a prominent leader of women’s suffrage. In 1912, at the request of the women of Honolulu, she organized the National Women’s Equal Suffrage Association of Hawaii (WESAH), the first Hawaiian suffrage organization. Carrie Chapman Catt came from the mainland in 1918 to speak to the group. Hawaiian women became enfranchised along with their sisters on the continent when the 19th Amendment became part of the US. Constitution in August 1920. As residents of a U.S. territory, however, their elected representation was limited. It would take another 39 years for Hawaii to become the 50th state in the Union, and the residents of Hawaii, both male and female, to gain full U.S. voting rights. Dowsett did not live long enough to see that day; she died December 10, 1929.

Wilhelmina Kekelaokalaninui Widemann Dowsett

After the annexation of Hawaii to the United States, Dowsett became a prominent leader of women’s suffrage. In 1912, at the request of the women of Honolulu, she organized the National Women’s Equal Suffrage Association of Hawaii (WESAH), the first Hawaiian suffrage organization.

Carrie Chapman Catt came from the mainland in 1918 to speak to the group. Hawaiian women became enfranchised along with their sisters on the continent when the 19th Amendment became part of the US. Constitution in August 1920. As residents of a U.S. territory, however, their elected representation was limited. It would take another 39 years for Hawaii to become the 50th state in the Union, and the residents of Hawaii, both male and female, to gain full U.S. voting rights. Dowsett did not live long enough to see that day; she died December 10, 1929.

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