Women’s History Month began in the 1980s when “Congress passed Pub. L. 97-28 which authorized and requested the President to proclaim the week beginning March 7, 1982 as ‘Women’s History Week.’” ACCORDING TO THE LLIBRARY OF CONGRESS WEBSITE.
Mabel Welch: Pioneer Woman Architect
In 1929, Mabel Clair Welch and her son Elvin vacationed in California, and during the trip, she studied Spanish-style architecture to gather ideas in her home designs in El Paso.
Judy Zarate: She was always there.
Judy Zarate, a member of the Laguna Pueblo, served in local and national roles in the Women’s Political Caucus, becoming a leader of the caucus in the 1980s.
Anne Holder fought for women’s rights.
Anne Holder, a UTEP-trained sociologist, educator, and early activist in the El Paso Woman Political Caucus, was named Feminist of the Year in 1976 at their Women’s Equality Day (WED) fundraising banquet.
Bonnie Lesley and the Founding of the El Paso Women’s Political Caucus.
A critically important EPWPC leader and renowned Ysleta Independent School District (YISD) administrator, Bonnie Lesley, was an especially influential EPWPC founding mother.
The History of the El Paso League of Women Voters: 1940-1967
The El Paso League of Women Voters was organized in 1919, previously it was the El Paso Equal Franchise League which was organized in 1915, and was the first women’s suffrage organization in El Paso. The League faded away in the 1940s.
African American Suffragists in El Paso
The city had a small yet intensely cohesive African American community that was socially and politically active.
Black women from this community formed their own suffrage league, the El Paso Negro Woman’s Civic and Equal Franchise League (NWCEFL), which became the only African American suffrage organization in the United States to apply for membership in the Texas Equal Suffrage Association (TESA) or the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA).
How Texas women received right to vote and what role El Paso had
Women’s History Month events in El Paso
Other past exhibits on Women’s History Month
- Women as Agents of Social Change: El Paso’s Social Housekeepers, 1886-1930
- Notable Women in El Paso History from the 1920s-1970s : Athletes, Artists, and Writers
- The Lorenzen Family Collection: ‘How We Cook in El Paso
- El Paso Women Pioneering Athletes: Bowling
- El Paso Women Pioneering Athletes: Golf
- Pioneering Women Athletes in El Paso: Tennis
The El Paso County Historical Society would like to give a big thank you to Eva Antone Ross, Joseph Longo and Susan Barnum.