What were the roles and rights of women in the West?

1 Answer
May 6, 2017


They had more rights and had a bigger role than in the East.


The West remains famous for having been a laboratory for women's rights, indeed for instance women's right to vote was granted in 1869 in Wyoming.

"The 19th Amendment, granting suffrage to women, was approved by Congress in 1920. It was over fifty years previously, however, that Wyoming had entered the Union as the first state to grant women full voting rights. The next eight states to grant full suffrage to women were also Western states: Colorado (1893); Utah and Idaho (1896); Washington (1910); California (1911); and Oregon, Kansas, and Arizona (1912). "


" Women held many responsibilities during the westward expansion, such as managing the movement of households overland, establishing social activities in pioneer settlements, and sharing the hard labor of farming new land.

Frontier life was highly social, and women participated in many activities with their neighbors such as barn raising, corn husking, and quilting bees.

Some women found work in the sex trade in early mining towns.

Eventually, frontier towns attracted women who worked as laundresses and seamstresses, and organized church societies and other reform movements.

The western frontier also gave rise to many famous women who countered traditional gender roles, such as Annie Oakley, Pearl Hart, and Nellie Cashman. "