Women Who Opposed Suffrage
Not all women believed in equal suffrage. Minnesota was among twenty states that had an organized anti-suffrage movement.
There were two anti-suffrage organizations based in Hennepin County -- the Minnesota Association Opposed to Woman Suffrage and the Minneapolis Association Opposed to the Future Extension of Suffrage to Women.
The former made its headquarters in this building, the Meyers Arcade, right down the street from the suffrage headquarters.
Anti-suffragists did not believe women's vote would improve society or their role within it. Instead, they argued that women could serve society better by operating outside of the political system. Many anti-suffragists championed moral reform work such as temperance and children’s welfare. At the same time, they argued that partisanship in politics would corrupt their ability to fix societal wrongs, due to party allegiances and rivalries. They also believed that women and men had different but equally essential roles to fulfill; women entering politics would upset these traditional roles.
Anti-suffrage organizations functioned similarly to their pro-suffrage counterparts. They hosted events and speakers, participated in local debates, attended legislative sessions about suffrage, and published pamphlets spreading their message.
Once the vote was won, the League of Women Voters moved into this building, maintaining an office at 321 Meyers Arcade.