Definitions, Resources, and Notes

National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA): National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA): A primary force in the American women’s suffrage movement. This organization had its roots in 19th century suffrage associations that merged in 1890. NAWSA’s hope was to lobby states for state-level suffrage amendments, eventually resulting in a federal amendment. By the mid-1910s, NAWSA was lobbying for a federal amendment using the leverage of states’ support in Congress. Read more here:

Congressional Union/National Women’s Party (CU/NWP): Congressional Union/National Women’s Party (CU/NWP): This organization began as the Congressional Union for Women’s Suffrage while its leaders served on NAWSA’s Congressional Committee in 1913. However, NAWSA disapproved of the CU’s militant forms of protest and its focus on a federal suffrage amendment. Shortly thereafter, the CU and NAWSA split completely. In 1916, the CU adopted the name of the National Women’s Party and began picketing the White House in 1917. Read more here:

Suffrage: the right to vote in an election.

19th Amendment: Amendment to the United States Constitution granting women the right to vote. Passed by Congress on June 4, 1919 and ratified on August 18, 1920. “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.”

Ratification: Formal confirmation. Article V of the United States Constitution states that an amendment to the Constitution, after receiving a two-thirds majority vote in both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, must be approved, or ratified, by three-quarters of the state legislatures. After being ratified by three-quarters of the states, the amendment became law. In 1920, there were 48 states. Therefore, 36 states were needed to ratify an amendment. Read more here:

Petition: “a formal written request made to an authority or organized body,” or “a written request or call for change signed by many people in support of a shared cause or concern.” -Merriam-Webster Dictionary

For More Resources on Women’s Suffrage in Delaware, visit:


  1. Janet Lindenmuth, Anne Boylan, ed., “Biography of Marie T. Lockwood, 1872-1956” in Online Biographical Dictionary of Militant Woman Suffragists, 1913-1920 ed. Thomas Dublin and Kathryn Sklar, (Alexandria, VA: Alexander Street Press, 2020).
  2. “Suffrage Meeting,” Middletown Transcript, March 4, 1916; “New Castle Suffragists Name Miss Speakman Chairmen; Women Predict Victory,” The Evening Journal [Wilmington, DE], March 4, 1916.
  3. Lindenmuth, “Biography of Marie T. Lockwood, 1872-1956.”
  4. “Women Continue Ballot Battle,” The Evening Journal [Wilmington, DE], August 2, 1919.
  5. Jessie Hardy MacKaye, “Campaigning in Delaware with the Granddaughter of a Statesman,” The Suffragist, 7:34 (August 23, 1919): 7.
  6. Lindenmuth, “Biography of Marie T. Lockwood, 1872-1956.”