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Until We Organize: The Struggle for the Equal Rights Amendment

The Oklahoma History Center is pleased to host the photographic exhibit, Until We Organize: The Struggle for the Equal Rights Amendment, featuring 23 photographs both local and national, from activists for and against the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). The exhibit focuses on the most tumultuous years of Oklahoma’s battle over the amendment, from the late 1970s to the early 1980s.

The fight for an amendment to the US Constitution stating gender equality has been ongoing since the 1920s. The effort to pass the ERA heated up in the late 1970s when the ratification process made its way to individual states, including Oklahoma. The struggle to ratify the ERA failed when the deadline for its passage expired in 1982, only three states short of the required thirty-eight states needed for approval. Efforts to pass the Equal Rights Amendment continue to this day.

Located in the Chesapeake Event Center and Gallery, Until We Organize will be on exhibit through November 2020. The Chesapeake Event Center and Gallery also is used for meetings and events. Patrons should call in advance to make sure the room is open to the public on the day of your visit.


Ada’s Kathy Ressel at a rally at the State Capitol in support of the Equal Rights Amendment, January 5, 1982 (2012.201.B1085.0122, Oklahoma Publishing Company Photography Collection, OHS).