Conkwright, Bessie Taul. "Women Hold Jubilee Meet," Lexington Leader, January 7, 1920, page 2

Randolph Hollingsworth (she/her) Contribution

Author: Bessie Taul Conkwright

Title: Women Hold Jubilee Meet

Publication: Lexington [Ky.] Leader (January 7, 1920): 2.

The Lexington Leader (backed by the Republican Party) wrote a celebratory article on the ratification of the "Susan B. Anthony" amendment by the Kentucky legislature on the afternoon of January 6, 1920. The article not only quotes much of Governor Morrow's speech in the Phoenix Hotel on the evening of January 6th, it also gives information about the whereabouts of former KERA president Christine Bradley South (not in Kentucky at the time). It also clarified that Kentucky was not the 23rd but the 24th state to ratify the federal amendment - Rhode Island's legislature attained the goal three hours earlier than Kentucky. Readers might also have noted the lack of any mention of the Democratic Party's Laura Clay or the Prohibitionist Party's Josephine Henry, both of whom had been early leaders in the Kentucky suffrage movement but had by this time become estranged from KERA. See the official program of the KERA convention here:

Article transcribed below:

Women Hold Jubilee Meet; After Suffrage is Ratified - Governor Morrow Welcomes Fairer Sex to G.O.P. - Democrats Equally Felicitous - Mrs. Tiffany's Talk.

by Bessie Taul Conkwright

Fresh from the scenes of their victory in the General Assembly, where scores of them witnessed the ratification of the Federal amendment Tuesday afternoon, Kentucky suffragists gathered at the Phoenix hotel Tuesday night for their jubilee convention, which marked the close of their thirty years struggle to share with men the rights and responsibilities of enfranchisement.

A spirit of elation and thanksgiving characterized the large gathering of women, many of whom have battled for the cause for more than a quarter of a century, and was not dampened by the delay of the speakers for an hour. As ratification was not completed until 4 o'clock, and the road from the capital was bad, those making the trip in machines were very late in arriving in the city.

A wave of applause swept over the ball room as the party of speakers, who were entertained at dinner by Mrs. Desha Breckinridge, president of the Kentucky Equal Rights Association, entered.

* Telegram to Mrs. South *

After announcing the victory toward which she has worked for so many discouraging years, Mrs. Breckinridge suggested that a telegram announcing ratification be sent to Mrs. John G. South, former State president, who is now in Chicago attending conferences as chairman of the Woman's Division of the National Republic Committee. It was voted to wire Mrs. South and to thank her for her efforts for suffrage.

Mrs. Breckinridge, in her opening talk, said that Kentucky, which was in a sense a pivotal State, was the third Southern State to ratify the amendment, Texas and Arkansas having preceded her. She described the scenes in the State Senate and the House Tuesday, when no other business was taken up, and ratification was completed shortly after 4 o'clock. It was thought at the time that Kentucky would be twenty-third on the roll of States ratifying, but a telegram awaiting Mrs. Breckinridge at her home announced that Rhode Island ratified at 1 o'clock, making Kentucky the twenty-fourth State.

Mrs. Breckinridge introduced Governor Edwin P. Morrow, who was given an ovation, the large audience standing and cheering him. She recournted Governor Morrow's services to the cause of suffrage, and gave him much credit for the easy victory achieved the first day of the sessino to the surprise of the many well-informed men who had declared it could not come so soon. Gov. Morrow spoke on "Suffrage and the Republican Party."

Senator Thomas A. Combs presented Judge Clem S. Nunn, of Marion, and Senator Charles M. Harriss, of Versailles, who followed Governor Morrow, telling of "Suffrage and the Democratic Party", and Mrs. Edward L. Hutchinson introducted Mrs. Charles L. Tiffany, of New York. She spoke on the women's overseas hospitals.

* Governor Morrow Speaks *

Governor Morrow said in part:
   "The Republic party favors woman suffrage becuase it is right; it has always favored woman suffrage. The first State which ever granted equal suffrage to women was Republican. If I am not mistaken twenty-one of the twenty-four States which have ratified the Federal amendment are Republican.
   "If I am not mistaken, the thing that threatens woman suffrage is the opposition of Democratic States. I congratulate you on the fact that when Kentucky becomes a dependably Republican State it also becomes a dependably suffrage State.
   "As suffrage is about to become an accomplished fact, it seems to me that you have developed a horse race between the two parties, each of which claims to have been your best friend. But I believe that the Republican party, which made every man a free man, will make every woman a free and voting woman.
   "Your victory today did not come in a day; while coming at last like a clap of thunder, back of it are many years of struggle. It is not a bouquet: it is a trophy, won on a hard-fought field of battle. It equals any political triumph of any party in Kentucky.

* G.O.P. Welcomes Women *
   "The Republican party wil welcome into real fellowship the women of Kentucky. It wants your help, your confidence. It will be worthy ofyour support and your respect. We intend that the participation of women in Republican organization and campaign activities shall be on terms of the fullest equality.
   "Align yourselves with a party. It is only by and thru political parties that you can ever achieve results or obtain the reforms you desire. It is thru organized efforts in a party that constructive legislation is accomplished.
   "As a Republican, let me say that the doors of the church known as the old Republican party are open. Come in, we will be charmed to have you!"

* Judge Nunn Speaks *

Judge Nunn said that the women of Kentucky should remain the one independent element in politics, and that they would be the saving grace of the State if they did.