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Home > Women's History Month > Part 1: Women's Rights Pioneers > Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony

Susan Brownell Anthony was born on February 17, 1820 in Adams, Massachusetts. Her family were Quakers and she was one of 8 kids. Since Quakers believed that all men and women were created as equals, there were a large number of them involved in the abolitionist and women's rights movements. They also highly value education. Susan learned to read and write by the age of three. She was eventually taught at home in a school set up by her father when a teacher wouldn't teach her long division because she was a girl. Susan B. Anthony eventually went to a boarding school and later taught at the Eunice Kenyon's Quaker boarding school in New York.

In the early part of her career she worked in the anti-slavery and temperance movements. She met Elizabeth Cady Stanton in 1851. Susan and Elizabeth became good friends and worked together promoting women's rights for the rest of their lives.

Among the many projects the two worked on together are a weekly paper called The Revolution, founding the National Woman's Suffrage Association and publishing 'The History of Woman Suffrage'.

In November 1872 Susan B. Anthony voted in the presidential election, claiming that she had the right to due to the Fifteenth Amendment. She was arrested and fined $100, but she never paid it.

She essentially spent her whole life fighting for women to have the right to vote. And while her and Elizabeth remained lifelong friends, they did have some disagrements. One major one was that Elizabeth was interested in promoting many other women's issues also and Susan was interested only in women having the right to vote. She spent many years supporting the cause by writing and giving speeches. She gave around 75 - 100 speeches each year for about 45 years, despite the fact that she was always very self-conscious about how she looked and her ability to speak well publicly.

Susan did not get married or have any children. She died on March 13, 1906 at Rochester, New York - fourteen years before women were able to have the right to vote.

Quotes from Susan B. Anthony

'Failure is impossible.'

'that the right which woman needed above every other, the one indeed which would secure to her all the others, was the right of suffrage.'

'It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens; but we, the whole people, who formed the Union.'

'Resolved, that the women of this nation in 1876, have greater cause for discontent, rebellion and revolution than the men of 1776.'

'Men, their rights, and nothing more; women, their rights, and nothing less.'

'I declare to you that woman must not depend upon the protection of man, but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand.'

'The fact is, women are in chains, and their servitude is all the more debasing because they do not realize it.'

'There never will be complete equality until women themselves help to make laws and elect lawmakers.'

'The religious persecution of the ages has been done under what was claimed to be the command of God. '

More information about Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony House

The Trial of Susan B. Anthony

Elizabeth Cady Stanton & Susan B. Anthony Project


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