The city of Philadelphia, founded by William Penn, was named as such in 1682 because the word is Greek for “brotherly love.” Penn wanted his colony to be a place where those living in it could be free of persecution. Now, 338 years later, Philadelphia has temporarily changed its nickname from “The City of Brotherly Love,” to “The City of Sisterly Love.” This resolution will take place for the rest of 2020 in order to honor the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment which gave women the right to vote. The 19th Amendment to the US constitution was ratified on August 18th of 1920.
The temporary change to the slogan was announced by Philadelphia councilmember Katherine Gilmore Richardson and will celebrate the place of women in Philadelphia’s history. The resolution states that “the equal participation of women in politics and government is essential to building strong communities and a vibrant democracy that takes into consideration all facets of life, the workforce, family, and community.” This resolution wants to also stress that the 19th amendment did not benefit all women, especially not women of minorities. This slogan change is therefore meant equally to acknowledge the shortcomings that African American, Hispanic American, and Native American women had to face all the way until the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed. 1965, 45 years later, all women were then allowed the right to vote. The city of Philadelphia is excited to celebrate 100 years of women’s suffrage while highlighting that women of color have only been able to celebrate 55 years.
The resolution looks to celebrate the steps that have been taken in the direction towards equality and does not mean to exclude men, but rather uplift women. The tourism group Visit Philadelphia and the City Council hope that this will encourage visitors and residents of Philadelphia to explore the many contributions that women have made in Philadelphia throughout the centuries. They also want to encourage women and women groups to travel together to Philadelphia.