A Special California Manís Perspective
John Hyde Braly (1835-1923) was a prosperous, retired Pasadena businessman who had come west with his parents by covered wagon. A year after the CA Woman Suffrage victory, he wrote, “Memory Pictures, An Autobiography”. The final chapter is one of the few accounts of the woman suffrage victory in California.
What follows are quotes from the final chapter. The entire final chapter, along with letters of tribute from over a dozen California suffrage leaders praising Braly, who was in his mid-70's, for his help in reviving the movement, particularly in the south, can be found at MY PART IN THE BATTLE FOR WOMAN’S SUFFRAGE
”I... propose telling something of my personal activity in a work of which I am prouder than of aught else I have ever done, my part …in the work for Woman’s Enfranchisement in the state of California; for I consider it the crowning work of my long life, yielding as it does great satisfaction and the full fruition of my hopes…”
“…So complete was the campaign in California that, whenever an authoritative history is written of the entire work of the state, there will be written in glowing words the story of those preponderating influences which carried the great struggle to a successful culmination. ..”
“…When it is God’s season the call is sure to come in some form or other. The Hour and the Call came. A Voice spoke in my soul one winter day amid the sunshine and flowers of Pasadena. … What shall I do? The Cause is unpopular – nay, even dead.” My son Arthur argued: “People are not ready for it. Wait.” But we had already waited sixteen long years for the people to get ready, and they were getting less and less ready every year….”
“…I saw that the men must be awakened – prominent men must be fully aroused to this vital question, men whose names would carry weight with not only the influential women, but with all high-minded thinking people….under the name of the Political Equality League of California....with a charter membership of one hundred men…for the sole purpose of procuring the full and complete emancipation of the women of California, and that at the earliest day possible!..."
“…I know of no principle in justice or equity that bestows upon me the right to make laws to govern my mother, sisters and wife without their consent! Who made men to be judges and rulers over women? God did not! …