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Celebrating Elizabeth City’s Annie E. Jones and Women’s Suffrage with a Marker on the National Votes for Women Trail

By December 21, 2022 No Comments
A marker honoring suffrage leader Annie E. Jones was dedicated on October 22, 2022, at the fellowship hall of Corner Stone Missionary Baptist Church in Elizabeth City, NC.
Jones was a member of the Matrons Social and Literary Club of Elizabeth City. This club was part of the National Association of Colored Women’s Club (NACWC). The NACWC’s national platform included advocacy form Black women’s voting rights. The club hosted NACWC president Mary Talbert in 1917. Talbert spoke at Corner Stone during this visit. After the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, Jones organized voter education classes for Black women in Elizabeth City and Pasquotank County. The purpose of these classes was to prepare Black women to take and pass a literacy test put in place in North Carolina in 1901 to disfranchise Black male voters. By organizing these classes and speaking publicly in support of Black women voting, Jones demonstrated much courage in advocating for voting rights during this era of Black disfranchisement.

Jones was a 1901 graduate of Elizabeth City State Colored Normal School (today Elizabeth City State University) and a teacher and school principal in the Elizabeth City public school system. She was a member of Corner Stone Missionary Baptist Church and lived on Speed Street in Elizabeth City. The marker will be located on Corner Stone’s property on Road Street, near Speed Street, a few hundred feet from Jones’s former home.

Speakers and attendees included: Elizabeth City Mayor Kirk Rivers, Elizabeth City State University Chancellor Karrie Dixon, Chris Veale of the Northeast North Carolina League of Women Voters, the North Carolina Federation of Colored Women’s Club, Elizabeth City Pasquotank Public Schools Superintendent Keith Parker, Mildred Vanterpool, President of the North Carolina Federation of Colored Women’s Clubs and the ECSU History Scholars Club and Student Ambassadors for Civic Engagement.

The Annie E. Jones Marker is one of only three trail markers in the state of North Carolina. ECSU history professor Dr. Melissa N. Stuckey applied for the Annie E. Jones marker.

Submitted by Dr. Melissa N. Stuckey, Assistant Professor, Elizabeth City State University