WOMEN

71 Powerful Photos Of Women Protesting Throughout American History

The past, present, and future is female.

As we celebrate the accomplishments of women during Women’s History Month, it’s essential that we also remember that there is still plenty to be fired up about.

But if there’s one thing American women know how to do, it’s resist. Just ask the millions of women who marched around the country in the Women’s Marches in 2017. Or the civil rights activists who came before them. Or the suffragettes who came before that. 

To honor the revolutionary spirit of American women, we’ve rounded up 71 photos of women protesting throughout U.S. history to show just how strong that spirit is.  

  • 1909
    Two Garment Workers Picketing, circa 1909.
    Universal History Archive via Getty Images
    Two Garment Workers Picketing, circa 1909.
  • 1912
    America suffragette parade in New York circa 1912.
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    America suffragette parade in New York circa 1912.
  • 1912
    Mrs Raymond Robbins and a group of women suffragists in front of the Coliseum at the time of the Republican National Conventi
    Chicago History Museum via Getty Images
    Mrs Raymond Robbins and a group of women suffragists in front of the Coliseum at the time of the Republican National Convention, Chicago, Illinois, 1912. The Coliseum was located at 1513 South Wabash Avenue. Robbins is holding a pennant that reads: 'Votes for women.' From the Chicago Daily News collection.
  • 1913
    Members of the National American Woman Suffrage Association marching with a banner which publicizes their '1000 branches orga
    Paul Thompson/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images
    Members of the National American Woman Suffrage Association marching with a banner which publicizes their '1000 branches organized in 38 states' at the New York Suffragette Parade on May 3, 1913.
  • 1918
    Suffragettes hold up banner in front of a building that has an architrave sign of the National Woman's Party circa 1918.
    Buyenlarge via Getty Images
    Suffragettes hold up banner in front of a building that has an architrave sign of the National Woman's Party circa 1918.
  • 1919
    Lucy Branham, Suffragette, at Rally, Washington DC, USA, circa 1919.
    Universal History Archive/Getty Images
    Lucy Branham, Suffragette, at Rally, Washington DC, USA, circa 1919.
  • 1920
    Boston women pickets are centering their drive to prevent the export of coal to that England on Sep. 22, 1920. Three of the w
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Boston women pickets are centering their drive to prevent the export of coal to that England on Sep. 22, 1920. Three of the women pickets are shown patrolling the waterfront in East Boston. The picketing is designed, the leaders said, to thwart the effort of Lloyd George to import 150,000,000 tons of coal from America to England thus breaking the strike of British Coal Miners.
  • 1937
    American police use tear gas against women pickets at the Newton Steel Company, Monroe, Michigan on June 10, 1937. 
    New York Times Co. via Getty Images
    American police use tear gas against women pickets at the Newton Steel Company, Monroe, Michigan on June 10, 1937. 
  • 1935
    Unemployed, single women protesting the job placement of married women before themselves at the Emergency Relief Administrati
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Unemployed, single women protesting the job placement of married women before themselves at the Emergency Relief Administration headquarters in Boston, Massachusetts June 24, 1935.
  • 1938
    Over three thousand Spanish American women, representing 20,000 members of the united Committees of Spanish Women in America
    George Rinhart via Getty Images
    Over three thousand Spanish American women, representing 20,000 members of the united Committees of Spanish Women in America arrived by special train in Washington today to publicize the plight of Spain's women and children and urge our government to revoke the embargo government of Spain circa 1938. Photo shows the sympathizers marching to the State Department and the white House with hopes of seeing the president and the Secretary of State. In the background can be seen the Capitol.
  • 1946
    To protest against the rising prices, the GI's widows demonstrate on 5th Avenue, 1946 in New York City, United States. 
    Keystone-France via Getty Images
    To protest against the rising prices, the GI's widows demonstrate on 5th Avenue, 1946 in New York City, United States. 
  • 1946
    Retail strike against Sears by clerks in Chicago, Illinois, USA, circa 1946.
    Jonathan Kirn/Corbis/Getty Images
    Retail strike against Sears by clerks in Chicago, Illinois, USA, circa 1946.
  • 1947
    Employees of the Arthur Murray Dance Studios picket in a conga line before the dance studio offices today, May 7 in protest a
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Employees of the Arthur Murray Dance Studios picket in a conga line before the dance studio offices today, May 7 in protest against Murray's alleged refusal to recognize Local 16, United Office and Professional Workers of America, CIO in New York on May 7, 1947. 
  • 1949
    Two housewives in gay blue bonnets, Mrs. J.C. Alicoate (L) of Miami, and Mrs. Arthur Hebb, Jr. of Baltimore, add their bit to
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Two housewives in gay blue bonnets, Mrs. J.C. Alicoate (L) of Miami, and Mrs. Arthur Hebb, Jr. of Baltimore, add their bit towards the fight for repeal of the tax on oleomargarine. They parade with their signs near the Capitol in Washington, D.C. on March 3, 1949.
  • 1951
    American housewives demonstrate against the high price of meat, on March 14, 1951 in the streets of Philadelphia. 
    - via Getty Images
    American housewives demonstrate against the high price of meat, on March 14, 1951 in the streets of Philadelphia. 
  • 1954
    Negro delegates from several states parade with signs in front of the White House to protest the mob slaying of four negroes
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Negro delegates from several states parade with signs in front of the White House to protest the mob slaying of four negroes in Georgia recently in Washington, D.C circa 1954. The picketers were mostly women and they carried on their demonstration in an orderly manner, letting their signs tell their story. 
  • Circa 1960s
    Picture shows people picketing outside of the White House in protest of the US involvement with Cuba. The woman in the foregr
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Picture shows people picketing outside of the White House in protest of the US involvement with Cuba. The woman in the foreground is holding a sign plainly stating her point, 'Don't invade Cuba'. Undated photo circa 1960s.
  • 1961
    A group of women outside the Russian Mission to the United Nations in New York City protest the testing of nuclear arms on No
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    A group of women outside the Russian Mission to the United Nations in New York City protest the testing of nuclear arms on Nov. 1, 1961. They are part of the Women's Strike for Peace, a one-day demonstration by American women in many cities throughout the United States.
  • 1963
    A full length portrait of a woman holding up a poster and demonstrating outside a Police Station, Gwynn Oak, Maryland, July 1
    Afro Newspaper/Gado via Getty Images
    A full length portrait of a woman holding up a poster and demonstrating outside a Police Station, Gwynn Oak, Maryland, July 1, 1963. 
  • 1963
    African American woman being carried to police patrol wagon during demonstration in Brooklyn, New York circa 1963. 
    Dick DeMarsico/World Telegram and Sun/Universal History Archive/Getty Images
    African American woman being carried to police patrol wagon during demonstration in Brooklyn, New York circa 1963. 
  • 1965
    Denver members of Women's League for International Peace and Freedom display sing of protest, photo left. They're Mrs. John G
    George Crouter via Getty Images
    Denver members of Women's League for International Peace and Freedom display sing of protest, photo left. They're Mrs. John Gilmore, left, and Mrs. Caswell Silver on Dec 10, 1965. 
  • 1965
    Alabama State troopers 'frisk' Negro youths arrested during demonstrations here prior to boarding them on buses. More than 13
    UPI/Bettmann/Getty Images
    Alabama State troopers 'frisk' Negro youths arrested during demonstrations here prior to boarding them on buses. More than 130 were arrested in Marion, AL on Feb. 5, 1965. 
  • 1965
    The House of Representatives met today to affirm seating of its Mississippi members, as Civil Rights demonstrators massed in
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    The House of Representatives met today to affirm seating of its Mississippi members, as Civil Rights demonstrators massed in silent support of their claim that the State's elections were illegal because blacks were barred from the polls August 17, 1965. Three members of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party's contestants for the state's five seats hold a telegram from Speaker John McCormick granting them permission to take seats on the House floor during the debate. They are, left to right: Fannie Lou Hamer, Victoria Gray, and Annie Devine.
  • 1967
    Demonstrators representing the 'Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam,' jam to the barred main gate of the White House today
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Demonstrators representing the 'Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam,' jam to the barred main gate of the White House today in Washington, D.C. on May 17, 1967. The group was led by Mrs. Martin Luther King (center) and Dr. Benjamin Spock (glasses, directly behind Mrs. King), who read a statement denouncing the Administration policies in Vietnam.
  • 1967
    Carrying graphically illustrated anti-Vietnamese war posters, members of the 'Women's Strike for Peace' push their way to the
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    Carrying graphically illustrated anti-Vietnamese war posters, members of the 'Women's Strike for Peace' push their way to the doors of the Pentagon Building on Feb. 16, 1967. The main doors of the building were locked for 30 minutes, as the women stormed the doors in an effort to gain entrance. This photo is a close-up of the group.
  • 1967
    In the Boston Marathon, one of two women running in the normally all-male-race, Kathy Switzer, (261) of Syracuse, New York, i
    Bettmann via Getty Images
    In the Boston Marathon, one of two women running in the normally all-male-race, Kathy Switzer, (261) of Syracuse, New York, is being hassled by BAA Marathon Director Bill Cloney, as he attempted to stop her from competing on April 19, 1967. The dark-haired girl did not show up for the physical examination required of all starters, (had she appeared at the starting line, she would never have been allowed to compete). she remained in the race, but was never seen near the finish line.
  • 1968
    Two older women making peace signs during anti-Vietnam war march on April 27, 1968.
    Harvey Silver via Getty Images
    Two older women making peace signs during anti-Vietnam war march on April 27, 1968.
  • 1968
    Several women protesters burn what they say are draft cards belonging to friend in a demonstration at the Federal court today
    New York Post Archives via Getty Images
    Several women protesters burn what they say are draft cards belonging to friend in a demonstration at the Federal court today in support of Dr. Benjamin Spock. Spock and three others were convicted in Boston Tuesday of conspiring to counsel young men to evade the draft. June 20, 1968.
  • 1968
    Women hold up signs demanding equal rights during a demonstration for women's liberation, New York City, circa 1968. 
    Hulton Archive via Getty Images
    Women hold up signs demanding equal rights during a demonstration for women's liberation, New York City, circa 1968. 
  • 1969
    A young American woman holds up a sign as she protests for women's rights in front of the Federal Trade Commission headquarte
    David Fenton/Getty Images
    A young American woman holds up a sign as she protests for women's rights in front of the Federal Trade Commission headquarters while policemen look on during Richard Nixon's inauguration weekend, Washington, DC, January 18-21, 1969. Her sign reads 'Judge women as people not as wives.' 

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