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"N" is for the New Era Club

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"N" is for the New Era Club. Founded in Spartanburg in 1912, the New Era Club existed for only a short while, but served as the nucleus of South Carolina's first statewide women's suffrage organization. White and middle class in its make-up, the club began disguised as a study group. Thirty women founded the club "to stimulate interest in civic affairs and to advance the industrial, legal, and educational rights of women and children." They met twice monthly for discussion, but they also sponsored a section in the Spartanburg Herald featuring pro-suffrage articles by the president of the National American Women Suffrage Association. In 1914, the group joined the national suffrage movement. Shortly thereafter suffrage clubs in Columbia and Charleston joined with the New Era Club to form the South Carolina Equal Suffrage League.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.