Women on 20s campaign announces winner of national vote

Wilma Mankiller, 1945-2010, was the first woman elected to the position of principal chief of the Cherokee Nation. Photo from All Things Cherokee

The Women on 20s campaign announced the winner of its national ballot but Wilma Mankiller, who the first woman elected to lead the Cherokee Nation, didn't come out on top.

Instead, voters chose Harriet Tubman as their favorite for placing a woman on the $20 bill. The former slave turned abolitionist was one of four candidates in a campaign that has attracted the attention of the White House.

"Considered by many the 'Moses' of her time, escaped slave Harriet Tubman became one of the country’s leading abolitionists before the Civil War," the Women on 20s group said this morning. "She returned to the South an estimated 19 times to rescue her family and others from bondage as a 'conductor' on what was known as the Underground Railroad, an elaborate secret network of safe houses leading to freedom in the North."

According to the group, more than 600,000 people voted since the ballot opened 10 weeks ago. Mankiller, who died in 2010, was a prominent choice, based on the news coverage of her inclusion on the ballot.

YouTube: The People's Petition for Historic Change

The group is now sending a petition to President Barack Obama to seek his support. The goal is to have a new image in place by 2020, the centennial of the 19th Amendment that recognized the voting rights of women.

The Department of Treasury has the authority to change the current face of the $20 bill -- president Andrew Jackson, who forced the Cherokee people and other tribes to walk the Trail of Tears away from their homelands.

Get the Story:
Your potential replacement for Andrew Jackson on the $20 bill: Harriet Tubman (The Washington Post 5/12)

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