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Feb 03 2020 - 09:56 AM
Today in History: The Fifteenth Amendment Is Ratified



It is February and as Black History Month commences, we draw attention to the ratification of the Fifteenth Amendment to Constitution of the United States. The third and last of the Reconstruction Amendments, the Fifteenth Amendment prohibits the federal government and each state from denying a citizen the right to vote "on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude". On February 3rd, 1870 the Fifteenth Amendment effectively gave African American men the right to vote, though it was not until 1965 that legal barriers were banned at the state and local levels.


Ratification of the Fifteenth Amendment occurred as early as March 1st, 1869 in the state of Nevada, and as late as April 8th, 1997 in the state of Tennessee. However, Iowa was the 28th state to ratify on February 3rd, 1870, following Georgia the day before. Because Nebraska and Texas had also ratified by the middle of the month, the timing was pivotal for national legislation and widespread celebrations in black communities and abolitionist societies.


The following articles are drawn from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.












  • Lippmann, W. (1965, Mar 26). Crux Of It. The Austin Statesman (1921-1973)





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