Frances Harper, 1825-1911

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Frances Ellen Watkins Harper | Fighting for the Rights of All | Ballot & Beyond

Francis Ellen Watkins Harper is a legendary civil rights activist who saw the intersection of the fight for abolition and suffrage. Harper was a published poet and author who had been born free in Baltimore in 1825 and campaigned around the country for temperance, abolition, and women’s rights. In an attempt to create social unity after the American Civil War, American Equal Rights Association members like Harper believed it was the right time to integrate gender, race, and class-based advocacy in a broad push for equality. Harper's integrated goals and ideal was largely unheaded and the suffrage movement was highly segregated.

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Ballot & Beyond is produced by Preservation Maryland. Funding for this video of Ballot & Beyond was provided by Maryland Humanities’ Voices and Votes Electoral Engagement Program and the “Why it Matters: Civic and Electoral Participation” initiative, administered by the Federation of State Humanities Councils and funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Additional support provided by the Maryland Historical Trust and Gallagher Evelius & Jones Attorneys at Law.

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