EXCERPT FROM FAMOUS WOMEN GATHER IN TWENTY-FIFTH ANNUAL CONVENTIONThe Roanoke Times
Elizabeth Cady Stanton the Oldest Member Present - Her Famous Suffrage Resolution of 1848 Recalled - How Susan B. Anthony First Began.
WASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 1893.-Famous women are gathering in Washington to attend the twenty-fifth annual meeting of the National American Woman's Suffrage association. The women who were famous at the first memorial convention are still at the head of the movement, though the active work has been placed into younger hands. In those early days the movement met with the ridicule all innovations contend against, and few were found willing to encounter the galling shafts of the American cynic. To-day the membership is in the hundreds, and besides the names of Miss Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Isabella Beecher Hooker and Lucy Stone, must be placed the active list of younger workers, such as Rev. Anna Shaw, Rachel Foster Avery, Lucy E. Anthony, May Wright Sewall, Alice
Stone Blackwell and Harriet Taylor Upton.
Though this is a quarter century convention, it is by no means proper to infer that the movement in America had its inception twenty-five years ago. It was Mrs. Stanton, still a member, who, in 1848, almost half a century ago, assisted by Lucretia Mott, called the first convention at Seneca Falls. The demand for equal suffrage was as broad then as it is now. In its purpose the movement has never grown. In its elaboration and application it has assumed splendid proportions.
The declaration of sentiments enunciated at that first convention recited among other grievances those growing out of the legal disabilities of women, the injustice of taxation without representation, lack of higher educational facilities and finally the resolution: "That it is the duty of the women of this country to secure to themselves the sacred right to the elective franchise."
Two years later Susan B. Anthony joined the movement and the Quaker girl of those early days put heart, soul and mind into the movement, and much of the work achieved must be credited to her.
Forty years ago women were given no representation in conventions where political or industrial topics were discussed. To-day nearly all the states have some degree of suffrage. New York and Minnesota have given women the power to vote for county superintendent of schools. Illinois gives them a vote on all school elections, including a vote for trustees of the state university; Kansas allows them to vote at all city elections, and Wyoming has given them full recognition, placing them on a level with the male voter. Two of the four territories, Arizona and Oklahoma, have granted women suffrage in school matters.
Delaware gives them school and municipal suffrage. Mississippi gives them a vote on some minor questions. Arkansas and Missouri allow them a vote on license questions. Kentucky gives suffrage to widows whose children attend schools. Tennessee and Texas give them voting power on minor matters. Most of the states give women the right to vote in business corporations of which they are stockholders, and nearly all give them a voice on questions of local improvements.
But the women who are foremost in this convention have given utterance to their sentiments in no weak manner. I take the following from the call issued for this convention, and which breathes the spirit that has controlled them in their long labors:
"The mission of the National American Woman's Suffrage association is to awaken public opinion to the necessity of bringing the practice of the United States government into harmony with its professed principles. Professing itself a government of the people, it is actually an oligarchy of men. Professing that the citizens of each state shall be entitled to all privileges and immunities in the several states, this United States government permits the states deliberately to deprive one-half its people - its women - of the only legitimate means of taking part in the government, the use of the ballot. Such glaring inconsistency between profession and practice is to be condemned in the interest of public morality. In laboring to obtain their enfranchisement women work, therefore, not only for themselves, but for the establishment of national honor and the elevation of the whole human race."
LEADER IS GONE* * *
Miss Susan B. Anthony, Long Head of Woman's Suffrage Move, Dies.
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PNEUMONIA FATAL DISEASE
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Lived to See Marked Change in Popular Estimate of Her Work.
Rock Island Argus
Rochester, N.Y., March 13-The long and eventful life of Susan B. Anthony closed at 12:40 this morning. The end came peacefully. Miss Anthony had been unconscious practically, for 24 hours, and her death has been momentarily expected since Sunday night. Only her wonderful constitution kept her alive. Dr. Ricker, her attending physician, said Miss Anthony died of heart failure induced by double pneumonia.
Miss Anthony was taken ill while on her way home from the National Suffrage convention in Baltimore. She stopped in New York where a banquet was to be given Feb. 20, in honor of her 86th birthday, but she had an attack of neuralgia on the 18th, and hastened home, pneumonia developing after her arrival here.
Saw Change of Sentiment.
Miss Anthony lived to see a decided change in sentiment from the time, in the winter of 1861, when she was hissed and hooted when she attempted to give a lecture on abolition. That lecture tour which started in Buffalo was a series of riots but Miss Anthony never flinched. The insults heaped upon her culminated in Syracuse, when she was egged, and burned in effigy. Her life for the past few years had been in strong contrast to these stormy times. She lived with her sister, Miss Mary Anthony.
Born of Quaker Parents.
Miss Anthony was born at South Adams, Mass., Feb. 15, 1820, of Quaker parents. There were three girls and two boys in the Anthony family, the boys being the younger. Susan was a precocious child, and her early schooling was received in a country school maintained by her father for his own and neighboring children.
Miss Anthony, resolved to become a school teacher, attended Friends Boarding school at West Philadelphia during the term of 1837-38, and until 1850 she taught in various small schools. The suffrage agitation, which gained its first impetus about 1848, won her support, and to this work she devoted her life.
First Temperance Work.
In 1852 Miss Anthony aided in organizing the first woman's temperance society, and she became active in antislavery and woman's rights work. During the civil war she organized the Woman's National Loyal League and acted as its secretary throughout the rebellion.
After the conflict, Miss Anthony devoted herself exclusively to the cause of woman's suffrage. In 1868 she founded the Revolution, a journal devoted to the suffrage cause, and in the following year, she organized the National Woman's Suffrage association, of which she became president and later honorary president.
In 1872 she was arrested in Chicago for voting under the Fourteenth amendment. She was convicted by a jury and fined.
Writes History of Suffering.
From that time until her death, Miss Anthony engaged in eight different state campaigns for a constitutional amendment enfranchising women, and she was a familiar figure in the halls of congress, where she appeared before committees since 1869. She was joint author with Mrs. Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Mrs. Mathilda Joslyn Gage of "The History of Woman Suffrage," and made numerous lecturing tours in the United States and England.
Miss Anthony's home life was ideal. She lived for many years at Rochester, N.Y., and her home was the rendezvous of the most enlightened men and women of the age, who admired her for her courage and conviction, and the nobility of her character.