In the early 20th century (1900’s), women attempted to address problems within American society. Their efforts have had a significant impact on American life. There were many influential women in our nations’ past. These specific women played the most important role that they could possibly have back then. Society back then thoroughly believed (at least the men did) that women were not equal to the men, and did not deserve to uphold the same duties and responsibilities as men did back then. Women were upheld to the responsibilities around the house, such as: cooking, cleaning, doing laundry, etc. stuff around the house, there were countless rallies and plenty of women that showed their disapproval with society’s outlook on them, however, it did little. The women listed below are, in today’s society, the most influential women in this “women’s rights” movement, women who did the most, women who did something to get themselves, and their cause, noticed by the people who both supported their cause, and those who didn’t.
First, there’s Mary Harris Jones. Jones was born in the year 1837, in Cork City, Ireland. Her and her family moved to Canada when Mary was just a teenager. She later moved to Chicago by herself to raise a family (Which was tragically lost to yellow fever [4 kids, and her husband]). After this, she joined the united mine workers in hopes of helping the striking mine workers come to an agreement with mine management, because these mine protests were starting to get violent, with militias being brought in to break them up. Mary was quoted as saying: "working men deserved a wage that would allow women to stay home to care for their kids." In 1901, the Pennsylvania silk mills called in mother jones to “encourage unity amongst striking workers.” Mother Jones was the person to bring management, as well as the factory workers together, by listening to each side, and what each side wanted out of the ordeal, and got the two sides to work out something that worked for both of them. In 1912, she was called to a literal gunfight between mineworkers and the militia that management brought in to end the strike. Martial law was declared and in jones was arrested, and sentenced to the state penn. for 20 years, but ended up in a boarding house for 3 months, instead. But not for nothing. State senators for Virginia, the state in which the incident occurred, launched an investigation upon jones’ release regarding the working conditions for coal miners. Not more than a month after her release, she was arrested in Colorado for the same thing, minus the shootout part. She spent “some time” in prison. John d Rockefeller visited theses mines and decided they needed reforms. She dies in 1930 at the age of 93.
Margaret Sanger also played a role in women’s rights…but in a different way. With the 3 official titles of “nurse, sex educator, and social reformer,” she put most of