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Short Stories: 1960s ERA YES Pin

Jun 12, 2012

by Alison Feldmann handmade and vintage goods

Here at Etsy, we believe that the story behind an object is often just as fascinating as the object itself. Short Stories is our series dedicated to telling the tales behind extraordinary pieces found or created by Etsy sellers. 

We turned up this vintage pin the other day and were fascinated by the information in Jape’s listing:

The Equal Rights Amendment affirms that both women and men hold equally all of the rights guaranteed by the U. S. Constitution.

Between 1962 and 1972, supporters of women’s equal rights lobbied, marched, rallied, petitioned, picketed, went on hunger strikes, and committed acts of civil disobedience as part of the long historical continuum of women’s struggle for constitutional equality in the United States.

The ERA was passed by Congress in 1972 and sent to the states for ratification. Although reintroduced into every session of Congress since, only 35 states (of the necessary three-fourths, or 38) have ratified.

More Short Stories

Have you created or come across an object with an extraordinary story that needs to be told? Email us!


  • Caitiec23

    Caitie and Jamie C. from NuitHiboux said 4 years ago

    Very cool story!

  • MegansMenagerie

    Megan from MegansMenagerie said 4 years ago

    Great post!!!

  • blueflowervintage

    blueflowervintage from blueflowervintage said 4 years ago

    A bit of a shock isn't it?! Love these historic bits!

  • RetrofitBecky

    Becky from RetrofitStyle said 4 years ago

    As one who spent my teens and 20's living this very real struggle for women's rights, I am appalled that this amendment was never ratified by ALL the states! I remember very clearly that my own mother, who was a professional business owner and a licensed real estate agent at the time, could not own property in her own name! Women who wanted to go to college were not taken seriously and could not get college loans because it was assumed that all they were looking for was a "MRS." degree!

  • maggiesraggedyinn

    Mary Robertson from MaggiesInn said 4 years ago

    Wow what a times have changed and for the better.......

  • studiorandom

    Dana Seilhan from studiorandom said 4 years ago

    The cruel irony being that if the ERA were properly ratified, we'd no longer see Defense of Marriage Acts either. The ERA would wipe them all out. And it'd be more difficult for employers to punish men for trying to spend more time caring for children. This wouldn't just benefit women, but there's something about a thing being labeled "for women" that makes it political Kryptonite. Times may have changed for the better, but when women still have political cooties, the times haven't changed enough.

  • StringBeardCraftery

    Stephanie from StringBeardCraftery said 4 years ago

    Such history!

  • LittleWrenPottery

    Victoria Baker from LittleWrenPottery said 4 years ago

    A fascinating little snippet of history!

  • RenataandJonathan

    Renata and Jonathan from RenataandJonathan said 4 years ago

    This amendment was never ratified by ALL the states ? ! Sad...

  • bedouin

    Nicole from bedouin said 4 years ago

    We've come a long way ~ but not enough for the amount of time that has passed since then.

  • lcarlsonjewelry

    Liesl Carlson from lcarlsonjewelry said 4 years ago

    I can not believe that the states have not ratified it yet!! That is pure craziness.

  • Iammie

    iammie from iammie said 4 years ago

    I love history.

  • Parachute425

    Terry from Parachute425 said 4 years ago

    Did I burn a perfectly good bra for nothing?!!

  • thevicagirl

    VaLon Frandsen from thevicagirl said 4 years ago

    It is a perfectly little interesting item.

  • VoleedeMoineaux

    Hillary De Moineaux from VoleedeMoineaux said 4 years ago

    That's awsome!

  • LineaLina

    Susanne Major from LineaLina said 4 years ago

    1972? Not so long ago

  • franz66

    franz66 from franz66 said 4 years ago

    I understand the concept of "short story", but this story is way too short.... "soundbit" is more like it. I would think something like the ERA would deserve more than 4 sentences, or any slice of history for that matter. This is a FANTASTIC concept for a blog that highlights the value of the etsy Vintage section, but c'mon, FOUR sentences?!?!

  • SparklePaw

    Leslie Thompson from SparklePaw said 4 years ago

    Yikes. Baby steps, I guess. (. _ .)

  • KaiceJoy

    Kirsti Joy from KaiceJoy said 4 years ago


  • mazedasastoat

    mazedasastoat from mazedasastoat said 4 years ago

    So, does that mean that discrimination against women is still actually LEGAL in the US, or only in parts of it? I find that shocking if true.

  • knitsbycaitlin

    Caitlin Edge from knitsbycaitlin said 4 years ago

    very interesting.

  • myvintagecrush

    Kathleen from myvintagecrush said 4 years ago

    Very cool! I love the mystery of vintage!

  • designsxdenise

    Denise from designsxdenise said 4 years ago

    I remember the fight was going on as I was entering the workplace. It's apalling that we're still having to fight to be treated equally, with brains just as good as the guy with the muscles. I remember when women weren't allowed to wear slacks at work; it was just a "given" that women made less than men for the same work, because men had families to support; when I was told that, when I became pregnant, I could continue to work with the public until I started to "show", then I would have to work behind the scenes where the public couldn't see me and my pregnant (oh, wait, couldn't use THAT word) belly, and the personnel manager told me he wouldn't expect me back at work after I had the baby, because "you women never come back after you have a baby." AND, at that time, I was the breadwinner in the family while my husband went to college full time. But when my younger brother needed a cosigner on his first ever auto loan, who did the bank loan officer accept as the cosigner? You guessed it. My unemployed husband. The loan officer refused to accept me, the employed one, because I was a woman. Oh, yes, we've come a long way, and we have owe a HUGE debt to those ERA fighters, but I am so afraid when I see us slipping backwards in today's political environment.

  • windycitynovelties

    Windy City Novelties said 4 years ago

    I enjoy reading the history of an item, especially one from such a significant time period. Thank you for sharing!

  • morgannekidd

    morgannekidd said 4 years ago

    i appreciate this!

  • liddysopretty

    liddy sopretty from liddysopretty said 4 years ago

    It's always good to remember...

  • PrairiePrimitives

    Tana Taylor from PrairiePrimitives said 1 year ago

    I'm getting ready to move and going thru everything to see what needs to be moved ... yet again. And I found an old ERA YES pin (the green & white version) from the mid-1970s. Not sure if I'll keep it or sell it ...

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