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In 1913, Women Marched on Washington. This Month, They March Again

German actress Hedwig Reicher wearing costume of "Columbia" with other suffrage pageant participants in front of the Treasury Building. Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress.

The Women’s March on Washington is expected to draw hundreds of thousands of women and allies to DC on the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration.

“This effort is not anti-Trump,” march co-founder Tamika Mallory told NPR. “This is pro-women. This is a continuation of a struggle women have been dealing with for a very long time.”

Along with echoing the 1963 civil rights demonstration where Martin Luther King Jr. first declared, “I have a dream,” the Women’s March on Washington has historical ties to the early suffrage movement. More than a century ago, thousands of suffragists gathered in DC on the day before President Woodrow Wilson’s inauguration demanding the right to vote.

Organized by the National American Woman Suffrage Association, the 1913 Women’s Suffrage Parade saw more than 5,000 marchers from around the country to “march in a spirit of protest against the present political organization of society, from which women are excluded,” according to the parade’s program. It was one of the first national efforts in the name of women’s suffrage, and it would take seven more years for women to secure the right to vote through the 19th Amendment.

Here are some photos from the day of the parade, March 3, 1913, courtesy of the Library of Congress

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The parade started on Pennsylvania Avenue, near the Capitol building.
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Lawyer Inez Milholland Boissevain was one of the leaders of the Suffrage Parade.

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Spectators started to block Pennsylvania Avenue during the parade.
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A group of “homemakers” marching in the section of the parade celebrating women workers. They were among farmers, doctors and pharmacists, actresses, librarians, and college women in academic gowns.
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Suffragists handed out flyers to advertise the parade.

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One of the nine female bands that marched in the parade.

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