Grants Available for 100th Anniversary of Woman Suffrage

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
[email protected]
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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Grants Available for 100th Anniversary of Woman Suffrage

Posted: 07/30/2019
  Mayor Rogero announces Suffrage Seed Fund
Mayor Rogero announces the Suffrage Seed Fund
  View the complete request for proposals, application and learn more about the Suffrage Seed Fund HERE.
  Highlights of the roleEast Tennessee played in woman suffrage

List of local events marking the 100th Anniversary of the 19th amendment
  Tennessee Woman Suffrage Memorial by Alan LeQuire
Click here for more information about the Woman Suffrage Memorial
  Unveiling of Burn Memorial
Click here for more information about the Burn Memorial
Today, Mayor Madeline Rogero announced the creation of a Suffrage Seed Fund with $25,000 to support the 100-year anniversary of a woman’s right to vote.

Suffrage Seed FundThe mission of the Suffrage Seed Fund is to empower the community to celebrate and raise awareness of Tennessee’s pivotal role in the quest for woman suffrage.

“The City is proud to support the recognition and celebration of this important anniversary and Tennessee’s role in the history of the women’s suffrage movement,” said Mayor Rogero.

Mayor Rogero was joined at the announcement on Market Square at the Woman Suffrage Memorial by Mary Pom Claiborne with the Knox County Public Library, and Wanda Sobieski, the president of the Tennessee Suffrage Coalition.

The competitive grant program will focus on educational and arts programming and awards will range from $100 to $5,000. Proposals will be evaluated on educational merit, historical accuracy, and the number of people that will be impacted by the project. 

The funds are included in the current 2019-2020 City budget approved by City Council earlier this year.

Proposals are due by October 1, 2019 and organizations must be headquartered in Knoxville or support a project that will significantly benefit the citizens of Knoxville.

East Tennessee played a crucial role in gaining women the right to vote.

In 1920, 35 states had ratified the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution, one state short of the three-quarters required for national ratification at that time. The Tennessee General Assembly had yet to decide on the State of Tennessee’s position.

The Tennessee General Assembly’s decision came down to 24-year-old Representative Harry T. Burn, a Republican from McMinn County, who would cast the deciding vote. Although Burn opposed the amendment, he received a letter from his mother that convinced him to vote for it. Febb Burn’s letter to her son now resides in the Knox County Public Library’s Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection

Additional plans to commemorate the 100-year anniversary are already underway, as demonstrated by the musical excerpt performed at the announcement by River and Rail for an upcoming production about Harry T. Burn.

Currently, there are two monuments in downtown Knoxville that recognize the pivotal role of Tennessee in woman suffrage.

The Woman Suffrage Memorial is a monument to three of Tennessee’s noted suffragists, with a representative from each of the state’s grand divisions, which was installed in 2006 at the south end of Market Square.

More recently, the Febb and Harry Burns Memorial was unveiled in 2018 and is located adjacent to the East Tennessee History Center. 

To learn more about East Tennessee’s role in the women’s suffrage movement and 100th Anniversary celebrations, visit

Additional information can be found on the City of Knoxville website at

The Suffrage Seed Fund application and information can be found at

Questions about the Suffrage Seed Fund can be directed to: Mary Pom Claiborne, Assistant Director, Marketing, Communications, & Development, Knox County Public Library, at [email protected] or (865) 215-8767.

The Suffrage Seed Fund is Brought to You By

City of Knoxville logoKnox County Public Library FoundationFriends of the Library Knox County Public Library logo