History Smashers Women's Right to Vote


Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

The other day my husband and I were discussing current events and the differing views in society. We are on opposite sides politically. We were discussing a bit of the discrimination going on in our country. My husband being a white, conservative man is pretty sick of being blamed. I am trying to educate him that part of the problem is he doesn't realize his part in the discrimination and how it is built into our society. We talked about history books. My conservative friends have been posting many things about how awful it is that people don't teach the traditional history any more. I asked him who wrote the history books when we were kids. I asked him which women he learned about in history. He told me the important ones, then he started listing people like Harriet Tubman and Susan B. Anthony. I asked him if he knew who Elizabeth Cady Stanton was. He said no. I used this information and the knowledge from today's book to make my point. In fact today's book let's us know that Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton wrote the official history of the women's suffrage movement before it was over and that is what is taught still today. 

Today's book is History Smashers: Women's Right to Vote by Kate Messner and illustrated by Dylan Meconis. In second grade Hazel had to play Susan B. Anthony in the history fair. Ever since she has had a huge interest in the Women's Suffrage Movement and Susan B. Anthony.

In fact a couple years ago we kept our promise and did a family trip out to the Berkshires to visit the birthplace of Susan B. Anthony. I had promised her we would go visit ever since she had to do the report on her.

Let's face it Susan B. Anthony gets a lot of credit for her role in getting women the vote. However there were many other people who played major as well as minor roles in the fight. Our book today shares the whole history and I have to say I learned quite a bit from this book. Hazel hasn't read it yet but I know some of the things I told her I learned she did not know. 

This book starts with the women wanting the vote and Abigail Adams writing to her husband about remembering the women. Of course he didn't or at least he didn't advocate for them. It shares the history of the states where women could vote for periods of time and it even shares information about some of the Indigenous tribes where women played important roles in decision making and ruling. Then it goes through the movement step by step and shares roles of different people including the Black people like Ida B. Wells and Mary Church Terrell. 

Now we have shared various stories of different people who have helped with the women's suffrage including Alice Paul, Nell Richardson and Alice Burke, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Frederick Douglass. The book even continues past women getting the vote to other groups of people getting the right to vote as well as some of the laws that were passed to hinder people from voting. Mary McLeod Bethune is shared and the work she did. The book talks about Black women getting the vote as well as Native Americans getting the vote to issues that exist today. This book is packed full of history you don't usually learn in history class. 

It goes into the personal relationships between some of the women. It also talks about how some of the women changed their views on racism when it worked for them. There is a lot of history to the suffrage movement with the different groups that were formed and how they fought amongst themselves. This book takes us through it all in an easy way to read that will be sure to keep the reader interested.

The book has photographs as well as illustrations throughout it and it is entertaining to read. Although it is nonfiction it is full of humor and is more like hearing from a favorite storyteller. Kids will enjoy learning from this book and reading it. I hope you will check it out. It is recommended for ages 8 to 12. I can't wait to check out some of the other books in the History Smashers series