New Memphis riverside monument honors women’s suffrage heroes

Published: Dec. 20, 2021 at 4:02 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - There is a new monument honoring trailblazers of the women’s suffrage movement located behind the University of Memphis Law Library.

The monument faces the Mississippi River.

“This monument is going to be great for heritage tourism. We wanted to focus on those who were instrumental in the suffrage movement, as well as those women whose political careers were made possible by the suffragists’ victory,” said Paula Casey, chair of the Memphis Suffrage Monument Committee.

For the last five years, Casey has led the charge to erect the installation.

Sculptor Alan LeQuire spent years designing the monument.

Large steel panels depict women marching across a span of one hundred years. Glass panels include biographies of women who made history in their respective fields.

Casey says people from Memphis were very significant in the history of women’s suffrage.

Busts of civil rights activists Ida B. Wells and Mary Church Terrell are prominently on display with several others who championed women’s right to vote.

“When people come here to celebrate this history and to acknowledge the accomplishments of these people, I hope that they will realize how hard-fought that vote was,” said Casey.

People walking across the I-40 pedestrian bridge will have access to the monument, which also includes LED spotlights that make it visible at night.

“They’ll see something that’s beautiful, informative, educational, and it should give Memphians a sense of pride,” said Casey.

Casey anticipates the monument will be a great addition to the work being done to renovate the riverside.

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