Today I will be serving a chocolate cupcake with a peanut butter filling. It also has a creamy peanut butter frosting. So, who would like a cupcake? Raise your hand. (Pass out cupcakes to the boys only.) Sorry, ladies. Think of this cupcake as a vote or the boys could drink and then they would abuse you and your children. If it wasn’t for Augusta M. Hunt things may still be like this today.
Augusta was married but then became a widow and was left with 4 children. As you can imagine this would make her very busy. Even though she was busy she still played a big part in society. Augusta was the president of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union for about 15 years. In this time she was about 60-80 years of age. This group of women fought for their children and their own rights against men abusing them. Most of the abusing was caused from an alcohol spike in the 1900’s. Women also had little say in the government: not being able to vote, sign contracts, and making it very hard to get a divorce from your husband. This is why the women came together to fight against the men.
A proposal was made to change the law in Maine, making women free to vote. Augusta gathered with thousands of other women hoping this would come true. It was then voted down, but the women did not give up. A couple years later President Wilson also supports the women. In 1920 the 19th amendment had been passed, and women can now vote. Augusta M. Hunt was the first women to cast a voting ballot in the state.
Not only did she achieve these things, but with the WCTU, she also helped begin one of the first day cares and free kindergarten classes. She also helped women be able to be guards in co-ed prisons and elected to school boards. Ten days after turning 90 Augusta died.
When you turn 18 and you think I don’t want to vote, think back one hundred years. It may not even have been possible without Augusta M. Hunt.
Information and Picture from: NBC’s Who do you think you are?