Bold Women. Change History. is the galvanizing public forum for the Women’s Vote Centennial Colorado. The centennial is a statewide initiative that began on the capitol steps on Women’s Equality Day in August and will culminate next year on the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment—the largest expansion of voting rights in US history.
There is a powerful history behind the women’s vote in Colorado. On November 7, 1893—almost thirty years before the federal government enacted the 19th Amendment—voters in the Centennial State passed constitutional amendment HB 118, prohibiting discrimination against women in voting laws. It was the first time that a US state extended voting rights beyond men, not by a stroke of the pen, but by popular vote.
And right after making history in 1893, Colorado voters did so again one year later. They went on to become the nation’s first to elect women to their state legislature. Then laws and politics immediately began to change in ways beneficial to all Coloradans. This is why the vision of the Women’s Vote Centennial Colorado is a future where Coloradans of every background and identity prosper.
Yet this is not a history of swift and unqualified progress. In fact, it took 16 years for voters in Colorado to choose more democratic voting laws. The first attempt to extend voting rights, in 1877, was soundly defeated—and battles for the right to vote had only just begun.
There are powerful truths inherent in this history:
- Coloradans have to work, and collaborate, for the change we seek.
- Your vote does make a difference, and every vote counts.
- You shape history every time you vote.
These truths are also inherent in the personal histories of Bold Women. Change History. presenters. The series features scholars, authors, and history-makers who illuminate what happens when voters knock down barriers and prohibit discrimination. All events take place at the History Colorado Center (1200 Broadway). Astronaut Susan Helms (Lieutenant General, USAF, Ret.), human rights advocate Carol Anderson—author of the critically acclaimed White Rage (Bloomsbury, 2016)—and Harvard voter-turnout historian Liette Gidlow are among upcoming presenters in the series. Bios, event details, and tickets for all events are available via h-co.org/BoldWomen.
Complimentary onsite childcare for children ages 6 to 12 is available for the Bold Women. Change History. events by request. Please complete the childcare request form 48 hours in advance of the event date. Guardians are required to stay on the premises and must complete a check-in form and present ID at pickup. For questions please contact April.Legg@state.co.us or 303-866-4688.