Updated: Jun 25
In honor of the Women's Vote Centennial this year, we will be baking some historical recipes from The Woman Suffrage Cook Book (1886.) Much like the Centennial Buckeye Cookbook (1876) we used for previous recipes, The Woman Suffrage Cook Book was compiled by women for women and was sold to raise money, in this case for the women's suffrage movement, but, no, it was not compiled or printed in Ohio.
Robert Parrott, Union County Historical Society President, was kind enough to share some great information with us on the women's suffrage movement in Marysville. For the next two weeks, as we celebrate our patriotism and the upcoming Fourth of July holiday, we are excited to share some stories of local women who fought to gain us the right to vote, a right we are proud to exercise as American citizens. Expect to see more suffragette baked goods and historical info in August (the anniversary of the passing of the 19th Amendment) and November (Election Day is November 3!)
This week, we will just be sharing some general background info on the suffragette movement as it pertains to Union County history before we delve into more specific biographies of some influential women.
After the Civil War, the 15th Amendment extended voting rights to all male citizens, regardless of race. This development led many women to question why the same rights were not guaranteed to them, and, as a result, groups formed to advocate for women's suffrage. Many of us recognize the names of women's suffrage leaders - Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, for example, both of whom came to speak in Marysville in the 19th century and were reportedly pretty well received. Elizabeth Cady Stanton spoke at Union Hall on March 28, 1877 and Susan B. Anthony spoke at the Marysville Opera House and City Hall (demolished in 1933) on November 19, 1878.
On August 26, 1920, after some ups and downs and significant resistance, particularly from Southern states, the 19th Amendment became law and women were granted the right to vote. Eight million women cast their vote in the November 2, 1920 election. Kathryn Burcher Roosa of Broadway was probably the first woman to vote in Union County - she voted absentee on October 6 as she and her husband were going to be traveling. Molly Simmons Bump voted for Warren G. Harding on October 26. Helen Gorton from Irwin also claimed to be the first Union County woman to vote. In 1990, she made a pretty wonderful statement about women's involvement in politics: "Women are just as capable as men and bring something to politics that we need. Females see things a little differently than men and that perspective may be a welcome change in government." Most importantly, she also said, "every American, male or female, should never fail to exercise their right to vote."
Our suffragette recipe this week is pretty straightforward - thin, crispy ginger snaps! We used about 2 1/2 cups of flour in the recipe, plus more for our rolling surface. We chilled the dough before rolling, an easy way to improve rolling in a modern kitchen with electric refrigeration. We rolled the dough very thin, cut and baked on parchment-lined baking sheets for 8-10 minutes at 375 degrees. Then - and this is important if you are like us and prefer a very crispy cookie - after cooling the cookies on wire racks, we baked them again for 10 more minutes in a 300-degree oven. These are wonderful dunked in milk!
Ginger snaps will be for sale for $2 at our farm market shed Saturday, June 27 and Sunday, June 28 12:30-6pm, or by appointment. Proceeds benefit the Union County Historical Society.