New York’s history is full of inspiring ladies who played a leading role in the national Women’s Suffrage Movement. March is Women’s History Month, so Albany’s cultural institutions are hosting special exhibits, talks and tours focused on telling the story of New York’s important role in the fight for (and sometimes against) women’s suffrage. Below are a few events where you can celebrate (and learn more about) the wonder women of New York’s past!


Suffrage NYS Capitol

Women's Suffrage Capitol Tour

Date: March 8
Location: New York State Capitol
Address: Washington Ave and State Street, Albany, NY 12242
Time: 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

Explore the connection between the NYS Capitol and the historic fight for women’s suffrage during this special tour. The tour will tell the story of the women advocates who marched the historic building’s halls and the state’s first female legislators. Reservations are required!


Victorian Dresses Albany Institute of History & Art

Women of the Albany Institute

Date: March 8
Location: Albany Institute of History & Art
Address: 125 Washington Ave, Albany, NY 12210
Time: 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM

The Albany Institute of History & Art is hosting a special gallery talk that will explore the stories of women in the museum, including the female artists of the Hudson River School and the suffrage and anti-suffrage movements in Albany. The tour is free and open to the public. It is also a great opportunity to check out the “Well-Dressed in Victorian Albany” exhibit featuring gorgeous gowns worn by women in Upstate New York and the “Spotlight: Albany & Anti-Suffrage” exhibit.  


Casting Her Ballot: Emily Rankin and the Suffrage Question

Casting Her Ballot: Emily Rankin and the Suffrage Question

Dates: March 10 (Tours at 11 AM, 12 PM, 1 PM, and 2 PM) and March 11 (Tours at 10 AM, 10:30 AM, 11 AM, 11:30 AM, 12 PM and 12:30 PM)
Location: Historic Cherry Hill
Address: 523 1/2 S Pearl St, Albany, NY 12202

Fifth-generation Cherry Hill owner, Emily Rankin, lived at the historic home during the age of suffrage debate. Her experiences at Cherry Hill, in Albany and at Smith College all impacted her views on this critical issue. This tour of her home will have you follow in Emily’s footsteps and reveal which side of the suffrage debate she was on.


Women's Suffrage New York State Museum

"The Battle Over Bloomers: Dressing for Women's Rights"

Date: March 11
Location: Huxley Theater in the New York State Museum
Address: Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12230
Time: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM

Donning a pair of pants is nothing special for the modern woman, but it was a battle for women of the past! The women’s suffrage movement adopted bloomers, or loose pants, as a representation of their ideals. This talk will uncover the layers of controversy associated with women’s dress and compare the differences between fashionable dress and reform dress of the 1850’s. The talk will be heavily illustrated and include reproduction costumes.


Women's Suffrage Parade

Spotlight: Albany & Anti-Suffrage

Location: Albany Institute of History & Art
Address: 125 Washington Ave, Albany, NY 12210

Did you know that Albany was considered a stronghold of the anti-suffrage movement? This special exhibit features the story of the women who organized the Albany branch of the New York State Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage, lobbied to make their views heard in 1915, and lost their fight in 1917. The exhibit is on display until March 11, so check it out before it is gone!


Votes for Women - New York State Museum

Votes for Women: Celebrating New York's Suffrage Centennial

Location: New York State Museum
Address: Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12230

This exhibit at the New York State Museum celebrates the centennial of women's suffrage in New York State. It addresses the nationally significant role of New York State leaders in regards to women's rights and the feminist movement in the early 21st century. The exhibit is on display until May, but Women’s History Month is the perfect excuse to dive in and learn all about the struggle for women’s suffrage and equal rights in New York State and beyond.