Reel Cowboys
Go to the OFFICIAL Silver Spur Awards Show website
Search the Reel Cowboys Website
Monthly Newsletter
Old Time Radio
Join the Reel Cowboys
Reel Cowboy Members
Premium Members
Social Media
Photo Gallery
Video Library
The Cowboy Code
Fundraising Campaigns
About Us
Friends of the Reel Cowboys
Contact the Reel Cowboys
Vol. 5 - No.02 February, 2023 Nooseletter Home SUBMIT AN ARTICLE
Let's Honor a Kick-Ass Arizona Woman
Frances Willard Munds Changed
Her Life in the Brand New State.

Sculptor Stephanie Hunter of Surprise, Arizona, won the commission to create the bronze sculpture of Frances Willard Munds, being cast at the Bollinger Atelier foundry in Tempe. With its base, it will stand ten feet tall and depict Frances walking forward, placing a ballot in a voting box and carrying a flag to honor those who came before her.
Arizona deserves a new tradition on election day: After voting, women could take their daughters and granddaughters to the State Capitol Mall to honor the woman who made it all possible. Men could bring their sons and grandsons to remind them how strong a state is that relies on both its men and women.

And they could all say “thank you” to a five-foot dynamo who astonished the nation by how she won the vote for Arizona women.

If Arizona Women’s History Alliance is successful, that tradition can start when a statute of Frances William Munds is placed on the Wesley Bolin Plaza—the first statue of an individual woman in the state’s sculpture garden.

They’re already halfway there, raising some $144,000. And although Covid threw a monkey wrench for a while, the drive is back on track, with the generous offer from an anonymous donor to match the next $70,000 they raise—enough to put them over the top.

“I look on her as a woman who was very strong and capable, who met obstacles that seemed insurmountable and kept going, who said ‘I can do hard things’,” notes Melanie Sturgeon of the Alliance. “She really understood the legislature was never going to give women the vote, so she took matters into her own hands.”
Historic Photo of Frances Willard Munds
Historic Photo of Frances Willard Munds
She did that through the initiative that was allowed by Arizona’s brand new constitution when it became a state on February 14, 1912. For its first election, on November 5, Munds gathered far more than enough signatures to put suffrage directly to the voters. She was betting the farm that male citizens would do what the legislatures had refused six times to do.

And, boy, was she right. Arizona shocked the nation and won a badge of honor forever. Suffrage passed in all 14 counties; 68 percent of the wonderful men of Arizona voted for it—the largest popular vote ever recorded anywhere in the nation. And Arizona joined the other Western states that had already given the vote to women—an astonishment to Eastern suffragettes who were still eight years away from national suffrage.

Then in 1914, the first time Arizona women had a chance to vote—Frances Willard Munds made history again, winning the state senate seat from Yavapai County. She was only the second woman in the nation to sit on a state senate. She sponsored bills to protect girls from prostitution and raise pension benefits for widows.

If she were here today, she’d probably want to repeat one of her slogans that led to such a victory: “Remember, Arizona women struggled as anxiously as men in building the state.”
Donations for the statue can be made to:
About the Author
Jana is an acclaimed Arizona journalist, author and speaker. She has been honored with two lifetime achievement awards as “an inspiration to the state’s media community.” She worked with Bob Boze Bell, spending the last three years collaborating on a sweeping book about the HELLRAISING AND TRAILBLAZING women too often overlooked in Western history. Smart women, gutsy women, fearless women, stubborn women, inspiring women. You can buy this book now on
Written by Jana Bommersbach of True West Magazine
Call 818-395-5020 for more information
click on the image for a larger version

Get Your Memorbilia From Various Silver Spur Award Shows
The Reel Cowboys of Hollywood
Montoya's Betrayal Information
The Reel Cowboys Salute Our Military
Home | About Us | Board of Directors | Members | Join | Calendar | News | Memorial | Products | Contact Us | Membership Dues
The Reel Cowboys © - All Rights Reserved.
The Reel Cowboys: Dedicated to  unique American tradition - the Western film
501 (c)3: 95-2161173