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3/28/2020 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

Iowa native Carrie Chapman Catt is featured in this one-woman play performed by Jane Cox, a Professor Emerita at Iowa State University, who served as Director of Theatre there for several decades. She has been involved with over 350 productions as an actress, designer, director, or playwright. Her one-woman shows have been performed in 25 states as well as the Kennedy Center and the Smithsonian.

Carrie Chapman Catt is one of Iowa’s greatest women. She graduated from Iowa State Agricultural College in 1880 as the highest ranked person in her class and as one of the very few women to have graduated from an Iowa college. After the death of her first husband, she supported herself through lecturing and was appointed in 1887 the state organizer of the Iowa Woman Suffrage Association. After working toward suffrage for another thirteen years, she became President of the National American Woman Suffrage Association.

In 1904, Catt organized and became President of the International Woman Suffrage Association, a post she was to hold until 1924. Her international work for suffrage took her around the world as she helped women to organize to win their rights. Later, she also was President of the Pan American Women’s Conference. Many feel that her greatest years came as she led NAWSA to the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920 giving all women citizens in the United States the right to vote under the Constitution. That same year she founded the League of Women Voters to educate women in politics and to continue the work for voters’ rights.

Catt then turned to the cause of peace. She organized and was President of many conferences on the Cause and Cure of War. In 1933 she became the first woman ever awarded the American Hebrew gold medal for her work in promoting better understanding between Christians and Jews. The award was presented by Eleanor Roosevelt. She was honored by Turkey as leader of women. The National Institute of Social Sciences conferred their gold medal for eminent achievements on Catt. She received an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws from Iowa State University and Smith College and an LL.D. degree from Moravian College for Women. Her work for the advancement of women around the world led to her selection as one of the ten most important women of the century in 1992.

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