Selected Special Collections
NAWSA, (National American Woman Suffrage Association) Collection
Library and papers of seminal NAWSA suffragists
Formed in 1890, NAWSA was the result of a merger between two rival factions--the National Woman Suffrage Association (NWSA) led by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, and the American Woman Suffrage Association (AWSA), led by Lucy Stone, Henry Blackwell, and Julia Ward Howe. These opposing groups were organized in the late 1860s, partly as the result of a disagreement over strategy. NWSA favored women's enfranchisement through a federal constitutional amendment, while AWSA believed success could be more easily achieved through state-by-state campaigns. NAWSA combined both of these techniques, securing the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920 through a series of well-orchestrated state campaigns under the dynamic direction of Carrie Chapman Catt. With NAWSA's primary goal of women's enfranchisement now a reality, the organization was transformed into the League of Women Voters.
In 1939 Carrie Chapman Catt (1859-1947), the president of the National American Woman Suffrage Assocation (NAWSA), donated her "feminist library" to the Library of Congress on behalf of her organization. Formerly the NAWSA's reference collection, the gift includes volumes from the libraries of Susan B. Anthony, Alice Stone Blackwell, Julia Ward Howe, Mary A. Livermore, Elizabeth Smith Miller, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucy Stone, and other reformers.
Also see the blog post:Celebrating Creative Women: Highlights from an exhibit on women's rights and the webcast: Catch the Suffragists' Spirit: The Millers' Suffrage Scrapbooks.
Like collections include: Susan B. Anthony Collection: The library and papers of Susan B. Anthony.
Digitized Materials from the NAWSA Collection