Ernestine Hara, circa 1917
Ernestine was born on January 25, 1896 to an anarchist family in Craiova, Romania. At the age of 11, she immigrated to New York with her family. Through her radical political connections, Ernestine became involved in the suffrage movement, joining the 1917 picket of Wilson’s White House.
She was arrested for picketing and sentenced to 30 days in the Occoquan Workhouse. In the workhouse, Ernestine helped develop a work stop protest to underscore their status as political prisoners which eventual lead to suffragette prisoners being transferred to the city jail.
Although she went to prison for women’s suffrage, her involvement in the suffrage movement began and ended with the 1917 pickets. The bulk of Ernestine’s career was spent in union organizing, mostly on the west coast. She became involved with the Los Angeles chapter of NOW around 1969 when she was in her 70s.