100 years of women’s voting rights in Kansas

Today marks the 100th anniversary of Kansas granting women full voting rights – just a day before a national election in which the political parties have been scrambling to win over women. Kansas voters – all of them men – approved a state constitutional amendment on Nov. 5, 1912, eight years before the ratification of the 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote nationwide, the Lawrence Journal-World reported. The Kansas amendment passed 175,246 to 159,197. Two earlier attempts to pass a voting rights amendment had failed in Kansas in 1867 and 1894. However, Kansas women were allowed to vote in school elections from the start of statehood in 1861, and they were allowed to vote in municipal elections in 1887. In fact, Susanna Salter was elected mayor of Argonia in 1887, becoming the first female mayor in the nation.