Susan
B. Anthony would forever be known as an important women’s suffrage leader,
abolitionist, and advocate for equal rights for everyone. She would influence
many people and help set the motion for many changes, and would unfortunately
pass away before seeing the Nineteenth Amendment get passed to allow women to
vote.  

            Susan B. Anthony was born on
February 15, 1820 in Adams, Massachusetts on a family farm. She was raised in a
Quaker family, and Quakers believed that women were considered equal with men under
the eyes of God. Anthony wished to spread that belief outside of the Quaker
religion from a young age, and devoted her life to changing the way women and
slaves were viewed, and spreading equality. (“Susan Brownell Anthony”)

            Anthony never married, and went on
to be a teacher for several years before returning to her family’s farm. It was
then when she met several abolitionists who would visit the farm. (“Susan B.
Anthony, NPS”) This brought her attention back to reform and she began to get
involved with temperance movements and anti-slavery movements. She would give
passionate speeches in public as William Lloyd Garrison
encouraged her to get involved. (“Susan Brownell Anthony”).

            Anthony would get her first major involvement with the
women’s rights movement when she attended the women’s rights convention in
Seneca Falls in 1848 and met Elizabeth Cady Stanton. They would form a close
bond of friendship and alliance that remained strong for many years. (“Susan
Brownell Anthony”). The two co-founded the American Civil Rights Association in
1868. They also became editors for the paper, The Revolution, in 1868.

            One year later, when the 14th and 15th
Amendments were passed, stating that black men could vote, Anthony and other
women advocates opposed it, as the government would not extend voting out to
women, which went against the idea stated in the Constitution, “all men and
women are created equal.” Because of these amendments, Anthony was inspired to
dress as a man and vote anyway. Her plan failed, and she was caught and
arrested in 1872, and after her trial and conviction, more of the nation’s
attention was turned to women’s suffrage. (“Susan B. Anthony”)

            Anthony then went on to help unify the many suffrage
organizations into one, the National American Woman Suffrage Association. She
continued with this cause until she died in 1906 from pneumonia. The 19th
Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, was passed 14 years later, and
was nicknamed in her honor, although she unfortunately never saw her hard work
pay off.

            Throughout Anthony’s role in women’s suffrage, she
delivered speeches and wrote articles to spread the movement. Her speeches
focused on the unfairness of allowing men, mainly white men, to hold certain
rights, and not allow women to have or be expected to hold the same rights,
while the Constitution was made to secure rights for ALL citizens. She used the
Constitution to back up her beliefs, and lashed out at the government for not
doing what the people of America trusted them to do. She would claim that women
must not be people or citizens if they were withheld from certain rights. Her
speeches would influence many women to join the movement, and her role in the
movement helped win women the right to vote and other rights.