Alice Paul, born in Mount Laurel in the late 1800s, was one of the most powerful forces and voices for women's equal rights in our country. She was instrumental in the fight to ratify the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote in 1920.

She believed that women and men should be equal partners in American society and authored the Equal Rights Amendment in 1923.

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Paul's parents were Quakers, and she was born and raised in Mount Laurel in Burlington County. It was from her upbringing and her parents that shaped her idea of equal opportunity for women. The home she grew up in, called Paulsdale, is now in the township of Mount Laurel.

I've been there several times since my brother lives up the street. It's a beautifully maintained large home at 128 Hooton Rd. Mount Laurel, NJ 08054. Even though the family was fairly wealthy, Alice and her three siblings lived a simple modest life.

Her inspiration for the suffrage movement began at the time of a trip to England. She was moved by the militant dedication of the suffragettes in the United Kingdom and brought that passion back to the United States when she returned three years later. She is not as well known as many other women in the suffrage movement and the fight for women's rights.

We have one of the heroes in the history of women in our country right in our own backyard. Mt. Laurel is exit 4 off the New Jersey Turnpike. It would make a nice day trip once it reopens on March 31st.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Dennis Malloy only.

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