Author: Holly Kent

an assistant professor of history at the University of Illinois, Springfield
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Lila Meade Valentine (1865–1921)

Lila Meade Valentine was a suffragist, education reformer, and public-health advocate. During her abbreviated life, she played a vital role in creating and running organizations that improved the health-care and public school systems of her native city of Richmond. Valentine also became an ardent supporter of woman suffrage early in the 1900s, cofounding the Equal Suffrage League of Virginia and serving as an active member of the National American Woman Suffrage Association. A talented organizer and an eloquent speaker, Valentine led efforts on behalf of suffrage that came to fruition in 1920, when the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified, giving women the right to vote.

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