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Voting Down the Rose: Florence Brooks Whitehouse and Maine's Fight for Woman Suffrage

Voting Down the Rose is a lively account of Maine native Florence Brooks Whitehouse’s efforts to win women voting rights in the decisive final years of the campaign, 1914-1920. Considered radical for picketing the White House, Florence helped win women suffrage against the challenges of conservative views of women’s roles, political intrigues, WW I, and the 1918 influenza epidemic. She founded and chaired the Maine branch of the National Woman's Party, working closely with Alice Paul and other national suffrage leaders. 


Told from Whitehouse's perspective, often in her own words, this important book brings Maine's suffrage history to life and illustrates the difficulty state suffrage leaders experienced trying to navigate between the demands of national organizations and their local constituencies. 


In the book's title, the rose is a reference to the anti-suffragists ("antis"), who used the rose as their symbol. The pro-suffragists' symbol was the jonquil.



ANNE B. GASS is Florence Brooks Whitehouse’s great-granddaughter. Her article, “Florence Brooks Whitehouse and Maine’s Vote to Ratify Women’s Suffrage in 1919,” was published in the Maine History Journal in 2012. Gass lectures regularly on Florence Brooks Whitehouse and Maine suffrage history at conferences, historical societies, libraries, and for other groups. Read about her latest suffrage project on her blog at  


Paperback, 6” x 9”, 294 pages with some b/w images 

ISBN 978-1-63381-011-2      $16.95

Purchase through Amazon or from Maine Author's Publishing, below: 





William Barry writes in the Portland Press Herald:


"Only a few pages into Anne P. Gass’s “Voting Down the Rose: Florence Brooks Whitehouse & Maine’s Fight for Woman Suffrage” and the reader, even with decades of study in the field of Maine history, is learning new, exciting information available nowhere else. At least, not unless one is game to read thousands of letters, documents and newspaper clippings left by Whitehouse (1869-1945) to her descendants, the Maine Historical Society, the Portland Public Library and other institutions throughout the country.


The author, Whitehouse’s great-grand-daughter, is never sentimental, for this is a true work of scholarship..." 


Click here to read the full review.


Florence Brooks Whitehouse

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