Louisa Ann Swain sculpture.

Statue of First Woman to Vote

Field review by the editors.

Laramie, Wyoming

Louisa Ann Swain was 68 years old when she moved with her family from Indiana to Wyoming. A year later she was in Laramie -- which was still just a railroad tent city -- walking down a street with a bucket to buy some yeast. She passed a polling place and, apparently on impulse, decided to go in and vote. No one stopped her, making Louisa the first woman in U.S. history to vote in a general election.

Another 50 years would pass before most American women would have the same option.

On September 6, 2008, the 138th anniversary of Louisa's vote, a bronze statue of her titled "The Franchise" was unveiled in Laramie. Louisa wears a shawl and clutches her paper ballot and yeast bucket, although some say that the whole yeast bucket thing is just a myth. But not her vote; she really did vote.

Statue of First Woman to Vote

Wyoming Women's History House

Address:
317 S. 2nd St., Laramie, WY
Directions:
Wyoming Women's History House. Downtown, on the east side of S. 2nd St., just north of its intersection with E. Garfield St.
Hours:
Visible from the street, although often gated. Local health policies may affect hours and access.
Save to My Sights

Nearby Offbeat Places

Matthew Shepard Memorial BenchMatthew Shepard Memorial Bench, Laramie, WY - < 1 mi.
Big Brown T. Rex Made of CopperBig Brown T. Rex Made of Copper, Laramie, WY - < 1 mi.
Wyoming Territorial PrisonWyoming Territorial Prison, Laramie, WY - < 1 mi.
In the region:
Tree in the Rock, Buford, WY - 18 mi.

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September 27, 2020

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