Around Town | August 19, 2011 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - August 19, 2011

Around Town

A LEAGUE OF THEIR OWN ... With the 100th anniversary of women's right to vote in California fast approaching, the League of Women Voters of Palo Alto took time out Tuesday evening to commemorate the milestone at the Garden Court Hotel. California's men voted on Oct. 10, 1911, to give women their voting rights, making the state the sixth in the nation to approve, nine years before the adoption of the federal Nineteenth Amendment. According to the League, Palo Alto had many active suffragists: Virginia (Jennie) Arnott, state auditor for the Equal Suffrage Association; Mary Grafton Campbell, organizer of the Woman's Club; Anita (Annie) Corbert, president of the local Political Equality Club, which educated men and women on the cause of women's suffrage; Anna Zschokke, another co-founder and officer of the club; Sarah Wallis, who held suffrage meetings with leaders like Elizabeth Cady Stanton at her Mayfield Farm home; and Alice Park, an adept publicist for the cause throughout the world. Mayor Sid Espinosa was invited to be the guest speaker Tuesday night, and he admitted to feeling "slightly uncomfortable" addressing the League on the topic, given that (a) he is not a woman and (b) he supposed that most in the room knew the suffrage history better than he does and would always understand the fight for women's equality better than he would. "But alas, here I am. This is what you've got," he said, to laughter. Espinosa's talk, "Three revolutions and one question," touched upon the continuing fight for rights throughout the world. Citing youth revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt, which were facilitated by social media such as Twitter and Facebook, he said that "courage, common cause and teamwork" were clearly the most important assets for the youth, as they were for suffragists. And, he predicted, technology will play a role in advocating for women's rights around the globe. A video of the event is posted on

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