​ Yellow Rose Project completes plantings in every county to commemorate the Centennial of Women’s Suffrage

Department of Arkansas Heritage - Friday, July 10, 2020

The planting of a yellow rose bush in every Arkansas county, which began with Gov. Asa Hutchinson and First Lady Susan Hutchinson planting the first one at the Governor’s Mansion on July 28 of last year, is now complete. The bushes commemorate the centennial of the passage of the 19th amendment, which was added to the United States Constitution on August 26, 2020.

“Congratulations to the Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commemoration Committee (WSCCC), which worked hard to coordinate this effort in time for the observance of the 100th anniversary of women’s right to vote being guaranteed by the 19th Amendment,” said Stacy Hurst, secretary of the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism. 

Each county planted one of the bushes on its courthouse lawn or on county property where it would be properly cared for. Cox Family Gardens of Benton supplied the rose bushes, and Lark Label supplied plant markers, which stated the name of the rose and the reason for its planting.

The buildings and grounds staff for Secretary of State John Thurston stored the roses in their green houses and kept them watered until they could be delivered to each county. The Secretary of State’s Outreach Team and Attorney General Leslie Rutledge’s Senior Military and Veteran’s Affairs representatives delivered the rose bushes to the counties.

“It has truly been a team effort with the state agencies and constitutional offices joining together to make sure this project was a success,” said Kathleen Pate, chair of the WSCCC. “I want to thank the county judges and clerks who worked with us to make this happen in each of their counties.”

Gov. Hutchinson issued an executive order creating the WSCCC in 2017 to commemorate, preserve and honor the efforts of all Arkansans who worked for women’s suffrage and ensured the state’s timely ratification of the 19th Amendment. Arkansas ratified the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution 100 years ago on July 28, 1919. The WSCCC is being administered by the Division of Arkansas Heritage.