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Photo of the Week


"How shall we know it is us without our past?"
- John Steinbeck

by Wendy Polhemus-Annibell, Librarian

New York Suffrage Vote Totals in Suffolk County, November 6, 2017. (From the Newspaper Collection of the Suffolk County Historical Society Library Archives.)

Suffrage (noun): the right to vote in political elections. 

In 1917, after seven decades of New York women and their male allies fighting the suffrage battle, a referendum was put up for a vote in New York state. The legislatively referred constitutional amendment was known as New York Suffrage Amendment 1 or Proposed Amendment 1. The vote took place on November 6, 1917, and was approved by male voters by a margin of 53.92% to 46.08% statewide.

In Suffolk County, Riverhead and Shelter Island were the only towns to cast majority votes against the suffrage, amendment, while the other eight towns--Southold, East Hampton, Southampton, Brookhaven, Islip, Smithtown, Huntington, and Babylon--all voted in favor of granting New York women the right to vote. Three more years would pass before the nation followed suit in 1920.

100 Years: Votes for New York Women, a Centennial Exhibit Celebrating Long Island Women's Role in New York's 1917 Suffrage VictoryOn display March 11 to end of year. Curated by Wendy Polhemus-Annibell. Gallery Hours: Weds. - Sat., 10:00 am - 4:30 pm.  When New York State women won the right to vote one hundred years ago—making 2017 the centennial of that historic civil rights victory—their success changed the national political landscape and was a critical tipping point on the road to a constitutional amendment. Our "History in the Hall" exhibit celebrates the centennial by narrating the stories of Long Island women activists who dedicated themselves to the powerful grassroots movement.


The Suffolk County Historical Society’s PHOTO OF THE WEEK Series is created by librarian Wendy Polhemus-Annibell using historic primary source materials from our local history library’s extensive archives. To subscribe, visit our website or send an email request to Wendy at wannibell@schs-museum.org.

Interested in seeing more historical photos from the Collection of the Suffolk County Historical Society? Spend an afternoon at our Local History Library perusing our extensive archival photography collections. We're open Weds. - Sat., 12:30 - 4:30 PM.

To view our Photo of the Week archives, visit our website at www.SuffolkCountyHistoricalSociety.org.

If you've been enjoying our Photo of the Week, please consider becoming a member of SCHS.

From the Civil War to civil rights, revolutions to restorations, spies to Suffragettes, boatbuilders to bootleggers, and whalers to wineries, Long Island's history comes alive at the Suffolk County Historical Society!

The Suffolk County Historical Society, founded in 1886, collects and preserves the rich history of Suffolk County and beyond. We offer a history museum, art galleries, a research library and archives, and a multitude of exhibits, programs, and educational lectures and workshops year-round. Our unique collections reflect more than three centuries of Long Island history. Click here to learn about Member Benefits!


Copyright © 2017 Suffolk County Historical Society. All rights reserved. No part of this electronic document may be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the Suffolk County Historical Society.

The Suffolk County Historical Society is a private non-profit organization and an Authorized Agency of Suffolk County.  Public funding provided by Suffolk County.