Anthony, Susan B. (1820-1906)

Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony's Life

Susan Brownell Anthony was born on February 15, 1820 in Adams, Massachusetts. Her parents were Daniel and Lucy Anthony. Susan was the second born of eight children into a strict Quaker family. Her father was a Quaker abolitionist and a cotton manufacturer. Susan learned to read and write at the age of three. Susan's family moved in 1826 from Massachusetts to Battensville, New York. When her teacher in New York refused to teach her long division, Susan was put in a "homeschool" set up by her father. Her teacher, Mary Perkins, was hired by her father. Later, she was sent to a boarding school near Philadelphia.

When Susan was older, she taught at an all-girls school, Eunice Kenyon's Quaker Boarding School. She taught there from 1846-1849. The school was near her home in Rochester, New York. Susan had lived with her family all her life, she never married. Susan B. Anthony died on March 13, 1906 in her home in Rochester. Her last public words were, "Failure is impossible."

Achievements and Works

One of the first projects Susan was involved in was the Temperance Movement. This reform was considered one of the "first feminist" movements of the Untied States. The Temperance Movement helped women and children with abusive alcoholic husbands. In 1849, Susan gave her first public speech for the Daughters of Temperance. Also in 1849, Susan helped found the Women's State Temperance Society of New York.

In 1851, Susan followed her Quaker upbringing and attended many anti-slavery meetings. At one of the meetings she met Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who was soon to become one of her good friends. Later that year, Susan joined Stanton and Amelia Bloomer to petition for women's rights. In 1854, Susan joined the anti-slavery movement where she served from 1856-1861, which was the beginning of the Civil War. During her time with the anti-slavery movement, she was an agent with the American Anti-Slavery Society. Other people involved in the American Anti-Slavery Society were Stanton, Lucretia Mott, and Lucy Stone, William Lloyd Garrison, and Frederick Douglass.

From 1868-1870, Susan, along with Stanton, produced "The Revolution". It was a newspaper made to encourage equal pay for women. In 1872, Susan started campaigning for equal rights for women. She, along with others, wanted women to have the same rights given to black males under the 14th and 15th amendments. That same year Susan led the women of Rochester to the city polls to test out the voting laws. For this, she was arrested two weeks later, and gave public lecture tours while awaiting her trial. In March of 1873, Susan tried to vote once again, and got convicted of violating the city's laws. She refused to pay the fine, and succeeded in not paying it.
Susan devoted the rest of her life for a women's suffrage amendment after her last trial. She belonged to a couple suffrage agencies. The first was the National Women's Suffrage Association. She was apart of the National Women's Sufferage Association from 1869-1890. The second was the National American Women's Suffrage Association, which she was apart of from 1890-1906. She did a lot of campaigning and lecturing while apart of both agencies. From 1881-1902, Susan, along with Stanton and Matilda Joslyn Gage, produced The History of Women's Suffrage 4 Volume.

In 1888,Susan, along with May Wright Sewall and other suffragists, created the International Council of Women, or the ICW. The ICW was one of the first international women's organizations. The goal of the ICW was to have every self-governing country to form a National Council of Women within their countries. Not only did the ICW want to bring women together for suffrage, but for other important issues.

Everything Susan B. Anthony was to form an amendment devoted to women's rights. Susan died before she could see her accomplishments help form the 19th amendment. While still campaigning with her agencies, Susan wrote the Susan B. Anthony amendment in 1878, which helped pave the way for the 19th amendment.

Her role in Nationalism and History

Susan B. Anthony had an important role in our nation's newly found nationalism. She wanted to be proud of something in her country, something that she helped found. She, and other suffragists, recognized that women were just as important to the United States as men. Susan and others wanted their country to be the best it could be, and they tried to improve it by giving everyone in America an equal chance.

Susan and her fellow suffragists knew that everyone should have a say in their country's actions. They wanted to stand up for what they knew was right, which was equal rights for everyone. Susan's role in nationalism was just trying to make the country better, because she knew we could be better. She knew the country had what it took to do what's right for everyone and improve what we already had, a great nation.

Susan B. Anthony made an impact on history by standing up for women's rights. She wanted women to be able to vote in elections and share their opinions. She was arrested twice and took a lot of criticism for the cause. Susan knew by standing up for what she believed in, that women's rights to vote would eventually be accepted. Whether they were African American or Caucasian she still believed that every woman had the right to vote.

Anthony, Susan B. (1820-1906). DIScovering Biography. Online ed. Detroit: Gale, 2003
Lucretia Mott
Lucy Stone
Garrison, William Lloyd
Seneca Falls Convention
American Temperance Society