1848 Women's Rights Convention

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Through out history, Americans have fought for the rights of freedom in their country, freedoms that have been passed down through dozen’s of generations. Freedom’s such as religion, speech, press, slavery and the right to vote. Americans, though very aware of their freedoms, often take them for granted and forget the struggles that their ancestors went through to obtain them. One example of this struggle is a woman’s right to be treated and looked upon by the government as equals. This was not an easy battle to win, and it took a strong few to begin to bring the struggle that women had faced for centuries to an end.

The need for women’s rights began back in colonial America where women were referred to as “inferior beings”. This era, though it is not particularly noted for it’s feminist movements, did hold such people as Margaret Brent, who was a wealthy holder of land in Maryland and was a strong, but unsuccessful voice in securing a place for women in the legislature of the colony. It was also a period where Quakers, and many other individuals, such as famous American patriot, Thomas Paine supported the rights of women, but at the time it was not enough to make a significant difference and it wasn’t until the 19th century that women would get the real chance to make a difference.

One of the main leaders in the Women’s Rights movement was Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who was born in Jamestown, New York on November 12th, 1815 into a strict Presbyterian home. She attended Johnstown Academy, where only boys were admitted, but because of her sex she could not attend colleges that offered higher degrees, so she was accepted into Emma Willard’s academy in Troy, New York where she graduated in 1832. After graduating she studied law with her father, Judge Daniel Cady, but was not admitted to the bar, once again because of her sex.

On May 10th, 1840, Elizabeth Cady was wed to Henry Brewster Stanton, but when they took their vows, Elizabeth did not vow to “obey” her husband. Henry and Elizabeth had seven children together. Later that year, the couple attended an anti-slavery convention, where Elizabeth along with seven other female delegates were denied the right to take vocal parts in the convention. Stanton along with fellow American Feminist, Lucretia Coffin Mott, were placed ...

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...n’s effort to make themselves and those of their sex equals worked, Stanton, Anthony among others, continued to speak and write about what they believed was right and by the year 1919 The 19th amendment was added that granted all citizens the right to vote, despite sex. The amendment was ratified on August 18th, 1920.

In conclusion, the women who organized the First Women’s Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, New York on those historic days in July and those who inspired them are true pioneers. They began the wave for more women and men to keep fighting for what they believe in and to change things if they think they are wrong. These were the people that made America what it is today, they gave them their freedoms, and all Americans need to be grateful for that.

Works Cited

Banner, Lois W. “Women Suffrage.” Funk and Wagnalls New Encyclopedia. OCLC 2004. 4 January 2004

Gottshall, Jon. “Seneca Falls, New York: The First Women’s Rights Convention July

19 & 20th, 1848.” 31 December 2003

“Stanton, Elizabeth Stanton.” Encyclopedia Americana. Grolier Online 2004. 31

December 2003 http://public1.hccc.suny.edu:2128/ea-ol/static/0000013.html
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