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Remember Women's Equality Day

WASHINGTON -- A portrait monument of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony and Lucretia Mott, pioneer's of the women's suffrage movement, sits in the Rotunda at the U.S. Capitol Aug. 24. Sculptor Adelaide Johnson left the piece unfinished on the grounds that until the women's suffrage movement is finished, the portrait will remain incomplete. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Amaani Lyle)

WASHINGTON -- A portrait monument of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony and Lucretia Mott, pioneer's of the women's suffrage movement, sits in the Rotunda at the U.S. Capitol Aug. 24. Sculptor Adelaide Johnson left the piece unfinished on the grounds that until the women's suffrage movement is finished, the portrait will remain incomplete. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Amaani Lyle)

ANDREWS AIR FORCE BASE, Md. -- -- On Aug. 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment to our Constitution was ratified, marking a turning point for American women and guaranteeing their right to vote. 

We celebrate this milestone as Women's Equality Day and pay tribute to those who stepped forward and demanded that our nation live up to its founding principle of equality for all. 

The fight for women's rights formally began in 1848 in Seneca Falls, N.Y., with a convention headed by Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott. 

There, Ms. Stanton read her "Declaration of Sentiments," calling upon women to organize and petition for their rights. Sixty-two women and 38 men signed the declaration, marking the beginning of the women's suffrage movement in the United States. 

In 1890, Wyoming became the first state whose constitution allowed women to vote, and by 1918, 14 additional states had ratified their constitutions. 

Two years later, the 19th Amendment was passed. 

Women today continue this legacy of leadership and strength. 

They shape the future through contributions to all aspects of American life.
They serve our nation with honor in our Armed Forces. American women serve as models for women in other countries in their endeavors to increase their roles in civic and political life. 

On Women's Equality Day, we honor the contributions and accomplishments of women throughout our history, and we pay tribute to all who bring equality in America.