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The Women’s Rights Convention of 1848 in Seneca Falls, New York marked the start of the women’s suffrage movement in the United States. In 1872, the Republican National Convention (RNC) approved a resolution favoring the admission of women to wider fields of usefulness.

In 1878, at the request of Susan B. Anthony, Senator A.A. Sargent, Republican from California, introduced the women’s suffrage amendment to the United States Congress.

In 1892, J. Ellen Foster of the Women’s National Republican Association addressed the Republican convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This was the first time a woman had addressed the convention and it was the first time women were seated as alternate delegates.

In 1916, Republican Jeannette Rankin of Montana was the first woman elected to Congress.

The 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, was defeated four times by a Democrat controlled Senate

In 1919, when the Republican Party regained control of Congress, the 19th Amendment passed the House and Senate. It became law in 1920 when Tennessee became the 36th and final state to ratify the 19th Amendment. 

By 1937 hundreds of independent Republican women’s clubs were already established nationwide. Marion E. Martin of Maine, the first woman to hold the title of Assistant Chair of the Republican National Committee, invited 38 women RNC members to meet at the Palmer House in Chicago to discuss the feasibility of federating local Republican women’s clubs. 

On January 1, 1938 the National Federation of Women’s Republican Clubs of America was officially born as an auxiliary to the RNC. By 1962, all 50 states were represented at the 11th Biennial Convention which was held in Phoenix, Arizona.

For a list of Current and Past Presidents:

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