Instructions for Suffrage Duty at the Polls on Election Day

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Admin/Biog History Sarah S. James was born in Oshkosh, Wisconsin circa 1862, the daughter of Ebenezer James, a pioneer lumberman, manufactuer, and merchant. She grew up in a household with five sisters and at least one brother at 98 High Street. Sarah graduated from the Oshkosh Normal School in 1882 and also graduated from the Teacher's College of Columbia University in New York City. By 1884 she was teaching in Oshkosh High School and would continue to until 1911 when she retired to devote her full attention to the suffrage movement. She helped organize and became the president of the Equal Suffrage League of Oshkosh. Her offices were located at Room "I" in the Cook's Block on the corner of Main and Algoma. She also held meetings in her home. Sarah was also the recording secretary for the Political Equality League of Wisconsin and served as an officer alongside with Rose Swart (Oshkosh Normal School) and Jessie Jack Hooper (wife of Oshkosh Attorney Ben Hooper). Sarah helped organize local events, speaking engagements, and letter campaigns. She went to the Republican National Convention in Chicago to picket in 1920 and Washington D.C. Sarah spent the rest of her life at her home on High street living with two other maiden sisters. In February 1939, she fell walking home from downtown and broke her hip. She died at mercy Hospital on February 14, 1939.
Classification Archives
Collection Sarah James
Dates of Accumulation 1912
Abstract Type written instruction sheet given to Suffrage workers at the polls.

"Workers must stand 100 feet from the polling booth. Each one must be provided with a good supply of 'suffrage cards' introducing the voter how to vote 'Yes' on woman suffrage. (These can be secured from Milwaukee Headquarters during the last week of the campaign.)
Ask each voter VERY PLEASANTLY, if he will vote for equal suffrage. If he says 'yes' or seems friendly, hand him one of the cards. If he is opposed or is unfriendly, DO NOT HAND HIM A CARD, but say, still very pleasantly, 'Well, you won't vote against it, will you?'
Remember to keep smiling and cheerful and not to get into any arguments. A pleasing impression or womanliness is what will count on Election Day. No badge of any kind should be worn by Election Day Workers except small suffrage badge or button.
Wherever friendly local politicians advise it, there should be a watcher inside each booth, -- if possible a man and of course a strong friend of Equal Suffrage, - who will have an eye on our referendum and make sure that no 'crooked work' is attempted to defeat it."
Category 8: Communication Artifact
Object ID RG11.7
Object Name Notice
People James, Sarah
Subjects Suffrage
Oshkosh Equal Suffrage League
Title Instructions for Suffrage Duty at the Polls on Election Day
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Last modified on: December 12, 2009