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Susan B. Anthony: American social reformer and women’s rights activist

Marija Georgievska

Susan Brownell Anthony was an American social reformer and women’s rights activist who played an important role in the women’s suffrage movement.

Born in 1820 on the 15th of February as the second oldest of seven children, she led a vibrant life.

American social reformer and women's rights activist.

American social reformer and women’s rights activist.

Two of her brothers, Daniel and Merritt, supported the anti-slavery movement in Kansas, and Merritt even fought together with John Brown who was an American abolitionist declaring that only by force that slavery can be removed.

Headmistress Susan B. Anthony in 1848 at age 28.

Headmistress Susan B. Anthony in 1848 at age 28.

In 1851, she met Elizabeth Cady Stanton, a co-worker, and an honest friend, and together they formed the New York Women’s State Temperance Society.

In 1856, Anthony became the New York state agent for the American anti-slavery Society.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton.

The reason behind this organization was the fact that Anthony was prevented from speaking on the podium at the temperance conference because she was a female.

Years later in 1863 Anthony and Stanton also formed the Women’s Loyal National League, an organization that managed to conduct the biggest petition America has ever seen.

They collected nearly 400,000 signatures in support of the abolition of slavery.

Letter by Susan B. Anthony in Support of Women's Suffrage.

Letter by Susan B. Anthony in Support of Women’s Suffrage.

In 1872, Susan was arrested because she went to vote in her hometown of Rochester, New York.

Given the fact that she was a social reformer and an activist, even though she refused to pay the fine, the authorities dropped the charges.

Thanks to this incident in 1878, Susan arranged for Congress to be presented with an amendment giving women the right to vote.

In 1920 this amendment was ratified as the Nineteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Image of US Postage stamp depicting Susan B. Anthony.

Image of US Postage stamp depicting Susan B. Anthony.

In order to support women’s suffrage, Anthony traveled a lot and she gave about 100 speeches per year.  She even created the international Council Of Woman which to this day remains active.

Susan B Anthony House, Rochester NY.

Susan B Anthony House, Rochester NY.

Susan celebrated her 80th birthday in the White House by the invitation of the President (William McKinley).

She even was depicted on the U.S coinage on the 1979 dollar coin.

Here is a fun read about another brave woman from our vault: Belva Lockwood was the first woman to argue a case before the Supreme Court

Anthony died on March 13, 1906, at the age of 86 in her home in Rochester, New York.