Important Events and Dates Related to Women in New Orleans

– In 1786 the Tignon Laws passed, forcing women of color in Louisiana to wear head wraps (Tignon).
Suffragist Movement – founded the Portia Club in 1892 by Caroline Merrick and Era (Equal Rights for All) Club by Kate Gordon. They worked with the National Suffrage Movement for the LA women’s right to vote.
In Louisiana constitutional convention in 1898 (22 years before the 19th amendment passed) delegate approved tax paying women the right to vote.
March 19-25th, 1903, The National American Woman Suffrage Association gathered in New Orleans for their 35th Annual Convention.
The LA suffragists objected the 19th amendment on the basis on race as well as their wish to be first acknowledged by their State.
– Basically, since the 19th amendment passed the women of New Orleans could vote. However, Louisiana was not one of the 36 states that ratified the 19th amendment in 1920. Only in June 1970, it was officially ratified.
February 23rd, 1941, The 125-member Krewe of Venus. The first female parading organization in New Orleans history organized the first all-female parade in the city opening the door for more all-female Krewe organizations.
September 26th, 1949, women stormed into Sazerac Bar in The Roosevelt Hotel to demand equal rights to enter the bar and have a good drink. Women were allowed to enter to this men-only bar only on Mardi Gras. Since the act of 1949, The Roosevelt Hotel commemorates this day every year.
August 26th, 1970 – The women of New Orleans organized a sister demonstration parallel to the Women’s Strike for Equality March in NYC, 50 years after the 19th amendment ratification to the constitution.
Same-sex marriage approved in Louisiana in June 2015 post the Supreme Court ruled that denying it is unconstitutional. New Orleans prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. However, it is not legally banned in all of Louisiana.

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