Fragment of “Kaiser Wilson” Suffrage Banner
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Alice Paul saved this fragment of one of the most controversial banners used by the National Woman’s Party in picketing the White House. The note on the fragment reads, "'Kaiser’ Wilson Banner East Gate White House Monday, Aug. 13, 1917".
In January 1917, discouraged by President Wilson’s continued opposition to the suffrage amendment, Alice Paul, the leader of the National Woman’s Party (NWP) posted pickets at the White House gates—the first people to ever picket the White House. These "silent sentinels" stayed on duty in all weather and in the face of threats, taunts, and physical violence. Using their banners and their quiet courage they asked, "Mr. President How Long Must Women Wait for their Liberty?" and "Mr. President What Will you do for Woman Suffrage?" Hoping to provoke a response, the language on the banners became more inflammatory. They used the president’s own words against him and pointed out the hypocrisy of his leading the country into the First World War to defend freedom while denying it to the women of his own country. This fragment is from a banner that read, "Kaiser Wilson Have You Forgotten Your Sympathy With the Poor Germans Because They Were Not Self-Governed? 20,000,000 American Women Are Not Self-Governed. Take the Beam Out of Your Own Eye." Crowds that believed the pickets’ activities were disloyal in a time of war attacked the suffragists and destroyed their banners but the picketing continued.
Currently not on view
- Smithsonian Institution
- Contributing Institution
- National Museum of American History
- Paul, Alice
National Woman's Party
Equal rights amendments
Equal Rights Amendment
Government, Politics, and Reform
- Alice Paul Centennial Foundation, Inc.
- Chicago citation style
- Fragment of “Kaiser Wilson” Suffrage Banner. 1917. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://collections.si.edu/search/results.htm?q=record_ID%3Anmah_1065920&repo=DPLA. (Accessed November 14, 2018.)
- APA citation style
- (1917) Fragment of “Kaiser Wilson” Suffrage Banner. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://collections.si.edu/search/results.htm?q=record_ID%3Anmah_1065920&repo=DPLA
- MLA citation style
- Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America <http://collections.si.edu/search/results.htm?q=record_ID%3Anmah_1065920&repo=DPLA>.