Reflect: Key People, Connections and Discussion Questions

This page is about reflection. You’ll find a list of some of the key people and organizations relevant to this section. You’ll also find a section called intersectionality to encourage thinking about how different issues are connected, and discussion questions to encourage deeper thinking. Take some time to answer the questions, look these people up and learn more about their stories.

The content on this site is not complete: there are countless numbers of people and so many stories — from small acts of defiance to major leadership positions — that didn’t get recorded or that don’t often make it into textbooks.

This website is meant to be grown and improved upon. We’ve included some of the heroes, but if you know people we are missing, let us know so we can include their stories too.

Key People & Groups

  • Lydia Chapin Taft
  • Abigail Adams


In Pre-Independence America, being a woman automatically meant having far fewer rights than men, especially if she was married.

Being a Black or an American Indian woman meant having even fewer rights than white women. For all these groups of women, there were fewer opportunities to have a voice (through voting or other means) in the happenings of everyday life.

Here, we can see the systems of dominance and oppression (intersectionality) at play over who was considered important in society. Being a white male who owned land gave you more power and influence on the decisions made in society — generally through voting —  and in the home.

When thinking about your positionality Your “position” in social structures based on identities such as race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexual orientation, etc., think about how your identities affect how you view and are viewed by others in society. How would your experience of pre-Independence America be different if you were a different gender, race, ethnicity or class?

Discussion Questions: 
Why do you think white men did not want women to vote?
Why do you think voting rights hinged on marriage and property rights?