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Anita Pollitzer

As a party organizer for the National Woman’s Party, Anita Pollitzer travelled across the country to earn crucial support for ratifying the Nineteenth Amendment. Pollitzer studied art and education at Columbia University’s Teacher’s College, but refocused her interests on the women’s suffrage movement soon after her graduation in 1916, when she joined the NWP. The following year, she was arrested as a “Silent Sentinel,” part of a suffrage group that picketed the White House night and day for over two years. During Pollitzer’s extensive travels for the NWP, she convinced Tennessee Legislator Harry T. Burn to cast the deciding vote for the Nineteenth Amendment. In 1933 she earned a master’s degree in international law and became vice chair of the World Woman’s Party, working alongside NWP chair Alice Paul. In 1945, Paul stepped down and chose Pollitzer to lead the NWP in her stead. Pollitzer was also a patron of the arts and a close friend of Georgia O’Keeffe: it was Pollitzer who showed O’Keeffe’s work to Alfred Stieglitz, jump-starting her career, and her posthumous book A Woman on Paper: Georgia O’Keeffe has been a major source of information about the artist’s life.


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Officers of the National Woman's Party in 1922.

Left to right: Alice Paul, Sue White, Florence Boeckel, Anita Pollitzer (center, holding hat), Mary Winsor, Sophie Meredith, and Mrs. Richard Wainwright.

Photo courtesy of the National Woman's Party and Wikimedia Commons.

Date of Birth

Charleston, SC
United States

Date of Death

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Anita Pollitzer." (Viewed on December 5, 2020) <https://jwa.org/people/pollitzer-anita>.


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