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The Vote


Kate Brennan heard the taunts of the crowd milling about the White House gates and slid across the taxi’s leatherette seat to see what was going on.  She had a train to catch, but at the sight of the twelve women lined up along the wrought-iron fence, she asked the cabbie to pull over.

Leaning out the open window, she studied the women.  Most looked to be in their twenties, her age.  Shoulder back and heads high beneath the hazy June sky.  Bare-headed warriors in white linen dresses, they held purple-and-gold-edged banners that read, “How Long Must Women Wait for Liberty, Mr. President?”

Kate remembered the photo on the front page of the Philadelphia Inquirer last year, showing suffragist picketers being hauled off to jail.  Yet here they were, different women, of course, but carrying the same message.  She sensed the danger heightening around them, felt a twinge of something close to envy.

Excerpted from The Vote © Copyright 2012 by Sybil Downing. Reprinted with permission by University of New Mexico Press. All rights reserved.

The Vote
by by Sybil Downing

  • paperback: 294 pages
  • Publisher: University of New Mexico Press
  • ISBN-10: 0826338577
  • ISBN-13: 9780826338570