From a Reuters story, 4 April 1997. Full text of the article:
Tennessee approves 19th century voting law
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Reuter) - Tennessee has passed the 15th Amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing the right to vote regardless of ``race, color or previous condition of servitude,'' 127 years after it became law.
In largely ceremonial vote, Tennessee legislators approved the amendment by a 98-0 vote in the state House and a 31-0 vote in the state Senate. The amendment, proposed after the Civil War to guarantee the right to vote to freed slaves, was originally ratified March 30, 1870 by three-quarters of the 37 states then in existence.
But Tennessee was not one of them and a 16-member black caucus in the state legislature decided to raise the issue a few weeks ago after a constitutional scholar brought it to their attention.
Neighboring Kentucky was the last state to ratify the amendment prior to Tennessee, approving it in 1976.