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Handwritten by Florence Allen on the back of the photo: "at 2728 Euclid Ave -The B.W.C. (Business Women’s Club) did this of their own notion - has 1600 members."

On Aug. 24, 1920, the state of Tennessee became the 36th state to ratify the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution granting women the right to vote. Allen’s friends in the Woman Suffrage Party encouraged her to seek election to a judgeship on the Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas. Since the primaries had already been held, the only way to place her name on the ballot was to gather the required number of signatures on a petition. In two days, party member gathered 2,000 signatures, and her name was placed on the ballot. Supported by the major Cleveland newspapers, community leaders and several unions, she was elected on Nov. 2, 1920, the first election women could vote except on local matters. Allen became the first woman elected to a judicial office in the United States.

Source: The Supreme Court of Ohio, Florence Ellinwood Allen Biography

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Image Courtesy of Florence Allen McNeely

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politics, judical career, Cleveland, Ohio

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