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Nashville Public Library exhibit highlights women's suffrage movement in Tennessee

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Posted at 1:38 PM, Dec 13, 2019
and last updated 2020-01-08 13:17:07-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — It's been nearly 100 years since Tennessee lawmakers cast a tie-breaking vote to ratify the 19th Amendment and give women the right to vote. Now, a new exhibit at the Nashville Public Library will honor the legacy of the women's suffrage movement in Tennessee.

A new "Votes for Women" exhibit room is under construction at the Nashville Public Library and is a vision of three women -- Margaret Behm, Jeanie Nelson and Juli Mosely. They wanted to specifically tell the story of the 19th Amendment because not only was it important for women but Tennessee had the pivotal role in its passage in 1920.

“We want to have people to the feel what was going on in Nashville at that time so we will introduce the story why Tennessee was the last hope... what it was like in the south particularly for women,” Behm said.

With the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment next August, they’ve worked fast, raising $3 million in just two years. And they used the library's nationally-acclaimed civil rights exhibit as a model.

They're calling it an interactive exploration of the power of women and girls and the power of voting. It's set to open at the Main Library in downtown Nashville in 2020. Click here for more information.

NewChannel 5 is proud to partner with the Votes for Women project. Over the next year, we will be taking an in-depth look at Tennessee's role in that historic decision, how far we've come and how far we still have to go.