The Woman's Hour

 The Great Fight to Win the Vote

— News —

In the The New Yorker magazine, praise for The Woman’s Hour:

The Imperfect, Unfinished Work of Women’s Suffrage by Casey Cep

A century after the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, it’s worth remembering why suffragists had to fight so hard, and who was fighting against them.

ABA 2019 Silver Gavel Award badge.


The Woman’s Hour has won the American Bar Association’s highest honor, The Silver Gavel Award for a book furthering the American public’s understanding of law. The award ceremony will be held this summer at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.

Elaine was invited by Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden to speak at the press preview of the Library’s new suffrage exhibit, Shall Not Be Denied, and to participate in the opening ceremonies.



Cover image of The Woman's Hour by Elaine F. Weiss.

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“Both a page-turning drama and an inspiration for every reader”

– Hillary Rodham Clinton

Soon to be a major television event, the nail-biting climax of one of the greatest political battles in American history: the ratification of the constitutional amendment that granted women the right to vote.


Nashville, August 1920: Thirty-five states have ratified the Nineteenth Amendment, twelve have rejected or refused to vote, and one last state is needed. It all comes down to Tennessee, the moment of truth for the suffragists, after a seven-decade crusade. The opposing forces include politicians with careers at stake, liquor companies, railroad magnates, and a lot of racists who don’t want black women voting. And then there are the “Antis”–women who oppose their own enfranchisement, fearing suffrage will bring about the moral collapse of the nation. They all converge in a boiling hot summer for a vicious face-off replete with dirty tricks, betrayals and bribes, bigotry, Jack Daniel’s, and the Bible.

Following a handful of remarkable women who led their respective forces into battle, along with appearances by Woodrow Wilson, Warren Harding, Frederick Douglass, and Eleanor Roosevelt, The Woman’s Hour is an inspiring story of activists winning their own freedom in one of the last campaigns forged in the shadow of the Civil War, and the beginning of the great twentieth-century battles for civil rights.



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Curtis Sittenfeld’s Rave Review in NYT Book Review: “In The Woman’s Hour, the Battle Over the 19th Amendment Comes Alive”
“The deliciousness of the details in Elaine Weiss’ new book suggests that certain historical figures warrant entire novels of their own.”

Both a page-turning drama and an inspiration for every reader

Hillary Rodham Clinton

Anyone interested in the history of our country’s ongoing fight to put its founding values into practice—as well as those seeking the roots of current political fault lines—would be well-served by picking up Elaine Weiss’s The Woman’s Hour. By focusing in on the final battle in the war to win women the right to vote, told from the point of view of its foot soldiers, Weiss humanizes both the women working in favor of the amendment and those working against it, exposing all their convictions, tactics, and flaws. She never shies away from the complicating issue of race; the frequent conflict and occasional sabotage that occurred between women’s suffrage activists and the leaders of the nascent civil rights movement make for some of the most fascinating material in the book.

Margot Lee Shetterly

author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Hidden Figures

Weiss’s remarkably entertaining work of scholarship provides a thorough and timely examination of a shining moment in the ongoing fight to achieve a more perfect union.

Read the full review

Publishers Weekly, Starred and Boxed Review

In “The Woman’s Hour,” a gripping account of those fraught and steamy days in Nashville, Elaine Weiss delivers political history at its best. With a skill reminiscent of Robert Caro, she turns the potentially dry stuff of legislative give-and-take into a drama of courage and cowardice…

Fergus M. Bordewich

The Wall Street Journal Review

Imaginatively conceived and vividly written, The Woman’s Hour gives  us a stirring history of women’s long journey to suffrage and to political influence. Making bold connection with race and class, Weiss’s splendid book is as much needed today as it was in 1940 when Eleanor Roosevelt noted that men hate women with power. As every victory since the Civil War and Reconstruction faces the wrecker,  The Woman’s Hour is an inspiration in the continuing struggles for suffrage, and for race and gender justice, and for democracy.

Blanche Wiesen Cook

author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor Roosevelt

Writing with the verve this story deserves, Elaine Weiss brings to life the women who rallied in Nashville to get the nineteenth amendment ratified. From the gracious Carrie Chapman Catt to the radical Sue White, they were fearless in battle and elated in a victory that changed history. Three cheers for Weiss for this spirited and inspiring account.

Lynne Cheney

author of the New York Times bestseller James Madison

Elaine Weiss in the News

A collection of essays, interviews, reviews and speaking engagements.

The Wall Street Journal Review

The Wall Street Journal Review

In “The Woman’s Hour,” a gripping account of those fraught and steamy days in Nashville, Elaine Weiss delivers political history at its best. With a skill reminiscent of Robert Caro, she turns the potentially dry stuff of legislative give-and-take into a drama of...

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