Historic commemoration ceremony honors Ojibwe lawyer and suffragist

The marker will be part of the National votes for women trail, and will recognize the Turtle Mountain woman as an advocate for women’s votes, according to a press release.

Baldwin lived from 1863 to 1952 and worked for the United States Department of Education in the Office of Indian Affairs from 1904 to 1932. She was also quoted in newspapers across the United States in 1913, when she spoke in favor of women’s suffrage noting that indigenous women “have had the right to vote virtually since time immemorial”.

Although she has lived in many places throughout her life, Pembina was chosen as her historical marker site because it is her birthplace, the statement said.

Marie Louise Bottineau Baldwin // Photo contribution

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Susan Wefald, North Dakota coordinator of the National Votes for Women Trail, said Baldwin was selected to be included in the trail for her significant contributions to the women’s suffrage movement.

“Baldwin’s thoughtful support for women’s suffrage made the news and aided the suffrage movement,” Wefald said in a statement.

The dedication ceremony will take place from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, July 8 at the grounds of the Pembina State Museum. Speakers at the opening will include Turtle Mountain Community College President Donna Brown, North Dakota State Historical Board Chair Patrick Weir, Pembina State Museum Site Supervisor, Jeff Blanchard and Wefald.

The inauguration is part of a statewide celebration of last year’s centenary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, which granted women the right to vote. The amendment benefited mainly white women, while many women of color, immigrant women and poorer women remained disenfranchised for many years.

Native women gained the right to vote in 1924 with the passage of the Snyder Act, which recognized Native Americans as American citizens.

The tribute is part of the National Votes for Women Trail covering the United States, which is funded by the William G. Pomeroy Foundation of New York, according to the release. The North Dakota Centennial Women’s Suffrage Committee has secured five markers for North Dakota, which recognize significant contributions to the suffrage movement in Pembina, Grand Forks, Fargo, Valley City and Beach, ND

Marie Louise Bottineau Baldwin, lawyer and Ojibwa suffragist, will be honored with a historical marker at the Pembina State Museum.  // Contribution photo

Marie Louise Bottineau Baldwin, lawyer and Ojibwa suffragist, will be honored with a historical marker at the Pembina State Museum. // Contribution photo

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