Progressive Party Pamphlet, ca. August 5, 1912


From the Women Delegates
to the National Convention of
The Progressive Party
To the Women of the United States

BECAUSE women, as much as men, are a part of our economic and social life, women, as much as men, should have the voting power to solve all economic and social problems. Votes for women are theirs as a matter of natural right alone; votes for women should be theirs as a matter of political wisdom also. As wage-earners, they should help to solve the labor problem; as property owners they should help to solve the tax problem; as wives and mothers they should help to solve all the problems that concern the home. And that means all national problems; for the Nation abides at the fireside.


Chairman National Progressive Convention

Chicago, August 3, 1912


Isabella W. Blaney


Josephine Roche


Jane Addams


Mary H. Wilmarth


Alice Carpenter


Elizabeth Scott Child


Helen Temple Cook


Eleanor Garrison


Grace A. Johnson


Elizabeth Towne


M. Evelyn Fritzenger


Celeste Peyton Armstrong

New York

Mrs. William Grant Brown

New York

Mary E. Dreier

New York

Frances A. Kellor

New York

Bertha F. Elder

New York

Clara B. Morrison

New York

Clara Shuler

New York

Hannah M. Povey


[page 2]


Seconding the Nomination of Theodore Roosevelt

I rise to second the nomination, stirred by the splendid platform adopted by this Convention.

Measures of industrial amelioration, demands for social justice, long discussed by small groups in charity conferences and economic associations, have here been considered in a great convention, and are at last thrust into the stern arena of political action. A great party has pledged itself to the protection of children, to the care of the aged, to the relief of overworked girls, to the safeguarding of burdened men. Committed to these humane undertakings it is inevitable that such a party should appeal to women, should seek to draw upon the great reservoir of their moral energy so long undesired and unutilized in practical politics -- one is the corollary of the other; a [program] of human welfare, the participation of women in political life.

We ratify this platform, not only because it represents our earnest convictions and formulates our high hopes, but because it pulls upon our faculties and calls us to definite action. *** The new party has become the American exponent of a world-wide movement towards juster social conditions, a movement which the United States, lagging behind other great nations, has been unaccountably slow to embody in political action.

I second the nomination of Theodore Roosevelt because he is one of the few men in our public life who has responded to the social appeal, who has caught the significance of the modern movement. Because of that, because the [program] will require a leader of invincible courage, of open mind, of democratic sympathies, one endowed with power to interpret the common man and to identify himself with the common lot, I heartily second the nomination. [page 3]

Theodore Roosevelt to Jane Addams

Cleveland, August 8, 1912.

Dear Miss Addams: -- I wished to see you in person to thank you for seconding me. I do it now instead.

I prized your action, not only because of what you are and stand for, but because of what it symbolized for the new movement. In this great national convention, starting the new party, women have thereby been shown to have their place to fill precisely as men have, and on an absolute equality. It is idle now to argue whether women can play their part in politics because in this convention we saw the accomplished fact, and moreover the women who have actively participated in this work of launching the new party represent all that we are most proud to associate with American womanhood. Without qualification or equivocation, I am for woman suffrage, the Progressive Party is for woman suffrage and I believe within half a dozen years we shall have no one in the United States against it.

My earnest hope is to see the Progressive Party movement in all its state and local divisions recognize this fact precisely as it has been recognized at the National convention. Our Party stands for social and industrial justice and we have a right to expect that women and men will work within the party for the cause with the same high sincerity of purpose and with like efficiency. I therefore earnestly hope that in the campaign now opened we shall see women active members of the various State and County Committee. Four women are to be put on the National Committee and I trust that there will be a full representation of them on every State and Country Committee.

While I am now addressing you I desire that this shall be taken as the expression of my personal hope and desire by all members of such State and County Committees, and I believe that I express the feelings of the great majority of Progressives in making this request. I have Judge Hotchkiss' assurance that it will be done in the State of New York and I very much hope that it will be done in the other states. With great esteem, I am faithfully yours,


Plank on Equal Suffrage

The Progressive Party, believing that no people can justly claim to be a true democracy which denies political rights on account of sex, pledges itself to the task of securing equal suffrage to men and women alike. [page 4]

Progressive Party Method to Secure
The Rule of the People

Initiative, Referendum and Recall.

Preferential primaries for candidates for the presidency.

Direct primaries.

Direct election of United States senators.

Policy of the short ballot.

Equal Suffrage.

Progressive Party Program to Secure
Social and Industrial Justice

The supreme duty of the nation is the conservation of human resources through an enlarged measure of social and industrial justice. We pledge ourselves to work unceasingly in state and nation for:

Prohibition of child labor.

Minimum wage for working women.

Prohibition of night work for women.

An eight hour day for women and young persons.

One day's rest in seven for all wage earners.

An eight hour day in continuous twenty-four hour industries.

Abolition of convict contract labor, except for governmental consumption, and the application of prisoners' earnings to the support of their dependent families.

Publicity as to wages, hours and conditions of labor.

Reports on industrial accidents and diseases.

Public inspection of all tallies, weights, measures, and all check systems on labor products.

Standards of compensation for death by industrial accident, injury and trade diseases.

Pensions for sickness, irregular employment and old age.

Establishment of continuation schools for industrial education under public control.

Establishment of industrial research laboratories.

Organization of the workers -- men and women -- as a means of protecting their interests and promoting their progress.

The establishment of a department of labor.

Prohibition of the issuance of injunctions when such injunctions would not apply when no labor disputes exist.

The right to trial by jury for contempt in labor disputes.

Minimum safety and health standards in industry.

Prevention of industrial accidents, of occupational diseases, overwork and involuntary unemployment.