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Wisconsin leaders celebrate 100th anniversary of women's right to vote

NOW: Wisconsin leaders celebrate 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Monday marks the 100th anniversary of a special moment in the fight for gender equality.

On this day in 1919, Wisconsin became the first state to ratify the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote.

A ceremony was held at the Capitol to mark the centennial, with Wisconsin leaders and legislators all gathered to celebrate the historic occasion.

The marquee moment was the unveiling of Wisconsin's original 19th Amendment document. That document is on public display until 10 p.m. Monday.

Wisconsin was the first to ratify the 19th Amendment on June 10, 1919, beating Illinois and Michigan.

Women leaders who were in attendance Monday say they hope young women recognize the significance of this centennial celebration.

"Moving forward I think there is so much we can do with our votes," Former Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch said. " Women hold so much power, just you wait when they unleash it."

"It is important that young people recognize not just every four years, but in our state and local elections, school board and city and county board, that there are literally women who gave their lives for us to have that right," Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling said.

Rebecca Kleefisch is the Executive Director of Women's Suffrage Centennial Commission, and she says there are events happening all over Wisconsin and the U.S. the rest of the year and into the next. 

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