Frances Munds Suffrage Statue

Make History and Support the First Female Statue at the AZ State Capitol*

Frances Willard Munds Women’s Suffrage Statue

As part of Arizona’s celebration of the passage of the 19th Amendment, the Arizona Women’s History Alliance wants to honor the Arizona women who worked so hard for the passage of our state’s suffrage law. We have launched a Suffrage Statue Campaign to place a statue of Frances Willard Munds, President of Arizona Equal Suffrage Association, in Arizona’s capitol mall in 2020.

Why Frances W. Munds?

  • She mobilized Arizona women in 1912 to fight for their right to vote
  • 8 years before the passage of the 19th amendment to the US Constitution she convinced 60% of Arizona’s male electorate to vote “Yes” for Arizona women’s right to vote
  • She was elected Arizona’s first female Senator and worked for the rights of women and children
  • She stood up for the women of the state, let’s help her stand on Wesley Bolin Plaza

We need you and we need to raise $250,000. for the cost of the statue. Please donate and become a part of women’s history in Arizona. Your donation is tax deductible and most importantly historical.

If you are interested in hosting an event, having a historian and representative come and speak to your group, or would like to donate any proceeds – please contact Faith Christiansen Smeets at faithchristiansen@gmail.com or Melanie Sturgeon at misturgeon@gmail.com ASAP. Time is of the essence.

* On April 23, 2019, Governor Doug Ducey signed HB 2183 (the Frances Munds Suffrage Memorial) into law. This means her statue can now stand on Wesley Bolin Plaza! This will be the first statue of an actual woman on state land.

HELP US BREAK THE BRONZE CEILING!

JOIN US IN MAKING ARIZONA HISTORY

To join us in honoring Frances Willard Munds, you can make a donation by clicking on the Donate buttons below or you can mail your donation to: Arizona Women’s History Alliance, c/o Bisbee Mining and Historical Museum, PO Box 14, Bisbee, AZ. 85603.

SPONSORSHIP LEVELS

The following sponsorship levels are also available.

$50,000 – Saguaro   Saguaro

  • Sponsor’s name and logo appears prominently on the plaque accompanying the Munds statue
  • Sponsor’s name and logo appears on all promotional materials
  • A full-page acknowledgement in capitol event program
  • VIP seating at all events
  • 10 minutes at the podium at the statue dedication event

$25,000 – Agave   Agave

  • Sponsor’s name and logo appears on the plaque accompanying the Munds statue
  • Sponsor’s name and logo appears on all promotional materials
  • A three-quarter page acknowledgement in capitol event program
  • VIP seating at all events
  • 5 minutes at the podium at the statue dedication event

$10,000 – Ocotillo   Ocotillo 

  • Sponsor’s name and logo appears on the plaque accompanying the Munds statue
  • Sponsor’s name and logo on all promotional materials
  • A half-page acknowledgement in capitol event program
  • VIP seating at all events
  • 2 minutes at the podium at the statue dedication event

$5,000 – Barrel Cactus   Barrel Cactus  

  • Sponsor’s name and logo on all promotional materials
  • A quarter-page acknowledgement in capitol event program
  • VIP seating at all events

$1,500 – Arizona Poppy   AZ Poppy 

  • Sponsor’s name and logo on all promotional materials
  • Acknowledgement in capitol event program
  • VIP seating at all events

To donate by check, please write the check to:

Arizona Women’s History Alliance

Mail your check to:

Arizona Women’s History Alliance
c/o Bisbee Mining & Historical Museum
P.O. Box 14
Bisbee, Arizona 85603

For more information, email  arizonawomenshistoryalliance@gmail.com

Who was Frances Willard Munds?

Frances Munds

Frances Willard Munds (1868-1948)

Frances Willard moved to Arizona during the 1880s and taught school in rural Arizona for several years before marrying John Munds, who later served as sheriff of Yavapai County. Frances became involved in the Arizona Women’s Christian Temperance Union in Prescott and soon discovered that women needed the power of the vote to really improve their lives.  She joined the Arizona Equal Suffrage Association in 1903 and served as the organization’s president from 1909 to 1912.

Arizona women had been fighting to win the vote since the 1880s and had attempted to gain suffrage through the Territorial Legislature and through the constitutional convention, but they had not succeeded.  After Arizona became a state in 1912, they decided to use the newly granted power of the initiative to take the issue of woman suffrage to the people. Munds was president of the Arizona Equal Suffrage Association at this time.

She was a consummate strategist and under her direction, Arizona suffragists created a powerful coalition supporting woman suffrage, made up of miners, labor leaders, farmers, ranchers, Mormons, Democrats, and Republicans.  The suffragists worked tirelessly to convince male voters to sign a petition to put the suffrage initiative on the ballot. After completing this task, they had to persuade male voters to support the initiative measure that would give Arizona women the right to vote. They were successful with over 60 percent of voters approving women’s suffrage during the fall election of 1912.

Frances Munds went on to serve in the state senate in 1914.  She was only the third female state senator in the country and told the press, “Our friends, the true blue conservatives will be shocked to think of a grandmother sitting in the state Senate.”  During her term, Munds introduced bills to protect women and children, including legislation to raise pension benefits for widows and to protect young girls from prostitution. She ran for secretary of state in 1916 but lost.

For more information, see Winning Their Place by Heidi Osselaer.

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