Susan B. Anthony: The Forgotten History of the Woman Who Inspired the 19th Amendment

Susan B Anthony

“The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of gender.”

Sunday marked the 99th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, learn more about the woman who was part of the fight for women’s suffrage. 

From humble beginnings to crusading for women’s rights, Susan Brownell Anthony was a woman who devoted her life to create change. Throughout her time, she worked as a teacher, a headmistress, and as an activist, paving the way for future generations on the path of equal opportunity, freedom, and liberty for all. She was an abolitionist, supported the temperance movement (an organized effort to limit, or even prohibit the sale of alcohol), and was perhaps the most known suffragist of the 19th century. She was also the woman brave enough to ask the American public, “Are women persons?”

Susan B. Anthony and the Making of a Social Activist

Susan B. Anthony was born on February 15, 1820, to Quaker parents in Massachusetts. One of eight siblings, Susan was surrounded by political engagement, as her parents were known supporters of the abolition and temperance movements.

In 1826, the Anthony family moved to Battenville, New York, where Susan attended a district school then a small local school, which her father set up. She was then sent to a Quaker boarding school near Philadelphia until 1838, when she and her sister were called home. The Depression, which had hit the year before, had caused her father to go bankrupt and lose the family home.

After relocating to Rochester, NY, in 1845, Susan’s parents become more involved in the anti-slavery movement and their home often housed abolitionist meetings. Known as an activist gathering place, renowned social reformers, such as Frederick Douglass and William Lloyd Garrison, were often in attendance at the Anthony home.

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