Fangirl Friday: The Suffragettes
As this Election Day draws near, let’s take a minute to give mad props to the women who worked to give us ladies the vote. Pull up your knee socks and straighten your pigtails while you get schooled on these incredible suffragettes, the women who made it all possible and got us the 19th Amendment.
The O.G.: Elizabeth Cady Stanton
The leader of the women’s movement, Elizabeth Cady Stanton was born to a father who made no bones about the fact that he wanted a son instead. When she married in 1840, she cleverly omitted obey from her vows (take that patriarchy!). She was the writer of the famous, Declaration of Sentiments, which was a revolutionary call for women’s rights. She worked with Susan B. Anthony on both a weekly militant newspaper, Revolution, and forming the National Woman Suffrage Association in 1869. She was the president at inception until 1890 when it eventually became the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA).
The Most Popular: Susan B. Anthony
Raised in a family of social activists, Susan B. Anthony developed a sense of moral justice early in her life. She taught for 15 years and then joined the women’s right movement in 1852. She dedicated her life to women’s suffrage; she never married or had children. Not only did she relentlessly tour the nation to get suffrage support, she was also an abolitionist, advocated for women’s labor organizations, and Convinced the University of Rochester to admit women in 1900.
The Ph.D. with a Hot Mug-Shot: Alice Paul
Alice Paul was a highly educated woman who fought hard (and maybe a little dirty) for women’s rights. After getting a degree at Swarthmore College in 1905, she went off to New York and the England to pursue graduate studies (which she later culminated in a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania). While in Britain she joined the suffrage movement and added several arrests to her roster, as well as doing hard time and a hunger strike to support her unshakable dedication to women’s rights. She knew how to get attention and wasn’t afraid to push the envelope in order for people to hear her message. When she returned state-side in 1910, she became a leader in the movement starting the National Woman’s Party with Lucy Burns, and later the Congressional Union for Woman Suffrage which was more hard-core than NAWSA. She was a key figure in the passage of the 19th Amendment. Not one to rest on her laurels, she later introduced the first Equal Rights Amendment in Congress and continued her work on civil rights for decades to come.
The Voice: Lucy Stone
Born to Abolitionists, Lucy Stone was working for equal rights while other girls were learning their ABC’s. In 1850, she pioneered the first ever national Women’s Rights Convention and gave the keynote speech which was reprinted in newspapers nationwide. She continued lecturing at a breakneck pace as she was paid well and often for her speeches. She was a supporter of The Women’s National Loyal League, but didn’t always get along with Susan B. and Elizabeth as she supported the 15th Amendment and they didn’t. While she didn’t live to see women get the vote, she can be proud as her daughter, Herriot Stanton Blatch, did and worked with NAWSA to pass the 19th Amendment.
Are you inspired? Ready to rock your vote? Invoke your favorite suffragette and get out there and celebrate our right to make our voices heard loud and clear on November 8th!