New Jersey Women's History



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African American Women

1797   An Act to regulate the election of members of the legislative council and general assembly, sheriffs and coroners, in this State. This act allowed voting by women, 1797. 

1797   "To Be Sold," newspaper advertisement for a slave woman, 1797. 

1808   "Manumission of Abigal," a manuscript document freeing the slave woman Abigal in Piscataway, Middlesex County, 1808. 

1806   Certificate of Abandonment, Piscataway Township, New Jersey. This document freed a slave owner from any obligations to the child born to her slave, 1806.

1807   Acts of the Thirty-second General Assembly of the State of New Jersey, 1807. This act limits voting to free, white, male citizens. 

1822   Painting of a scrubwomen by Baroness Hyde de Neuville (Anne Marguerite Henriette de Marigny Hyde de Neuville, unknown -1849).

1828  The Manumission of Ann and Rufus Johnson.   Ann and Rufus Johnson were 14 and 15 years old respectively when New Jersey enacted gradual manumission in 1804.

1843   Jarena Lee (1783 - unknown), the first known woman preacher in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.   

1840  "The Little Wanderer"     by Esther "Hetty" Saunders, c. 1793-1862.

1867   "Women Suffrage in New Jersey."  An address delivered by Lucy Stone, at a hearing before the New Jersey Legislature, March 6th, 1867. 

1918       NJ State Federation of Colored Women’s Clubs, War-time Address to the 3rd annual convention, 1918.

c. 1920s   Jessie Redmon Fauset (1882-1961), novelist and journalist. 

1924   Street sign honoring Jazz singer, Sarah Vaughan (1924-1990), in front of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Newark, New Jersey.

1927   Florence Spearing Randolph (1866-1951). The front page of the New Jersey State Federation News, the newspaper of the NJ State Federation of Colored Women's Clubs, with photograph of Randolph, the founder, and a history of early years of the organization, 1927. 

c. 1927   Nellie Morrow Parker (1902-), the first African American school teacher in Bergen County.

1928   Whittier House Cooking Class.

c. 1930s Marion Thompson Wright (1902-1962), an African American historian and teacher. 

1932  Domestic Science Class.    New Jersey State Manual Training and Industrial School for Colored Youth, Bordentown.

1932  New Jersey Organization of Teachers.   Teachers’ organizations, such as the National Education Association, were not racially integrated until the 1950s.

1952   Racially Integrated Classroom, Berlin Township, 1952. 

1952  New Jersey Wage Discrimination Act  This act was New Jersey's first equal pay act, 1952. 

c. 1960s   Lena Frances Edwards, MD (1849-1941), physician and presidential Medal of Freedom honoree. 

c. 1970s   Helen S. Meyner (1928-1997), Congresswoman from Phillipsburg, meeting constituents, 1970s.   

1975   "Equity in Educational Programs," 1975. The text of the regulations published by the New Jersey Department of Education to implement equal education requirements.

1985   Helen Stummer has been documenting Newark's Central Ward for many years. "Arnetha as a child while living in Newark," photograph by Helen Stummer.

2000   Toni Morrison,1993 Noble Prize in Literature and 1998 Pulitzer Prize winning author.

2003   Dionne Warwick and the composer Burt Bacharach have collaborated on numerous Grammy Award-winning songs.

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