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Jim Kershner’s This day in history

From our archives, 100 years ago

Mrs. Horace Kimball, a Spokane “society woman,” picked a fight with suffragists when she called women’s enfranchisement “a disgrace” which any “self-respecting woman should abhor.”

May Arkwright Hutton, who had just led the successful fight for suffrage in Washington, was more than happy to fight back.

“Mrs. Kimball boldly states that it is only unsexed creatures, women unhappily married, women who have no children, who are the ones crazy to go to the polling places to vote,” said Hutton. “This is a libel on the 200 women who registered yesterday in Spokane and the thousands who will exercise the right of franchise, and an insult to broad-minded and intelligent men of Washington who voted to give Washington women the ballot.”

Hutton said Kimball’s opinions were “about what I would expect of a southern woman and a boarding school graduate.”

Hutton further added that Kimball had apparently been too busy performing society “stunts” to inform herself better “upon one of the most important questions affecting the womanhood of the world today.”

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

1941: The United States entered World War II as Congress declared war against Japan, a day after the attack on Pearl Harbor. … 1980: John Lennon was shot to death in New York City.

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