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Susan Brownell Anthony ( 1820 - 1906 )  Category ( Civil_Rights_Activists ) [suggest a correction]
 

Susan Brownell AnthonySusan Brownell Anthony was born on 15 February 1820 in West Grove, near Adams, Massachusetts to Daniel Anthony and Lucy Read. Susan followed in her parent's footsteps, as Lucy was an early women's rights activist. After the family moved to New York and Susan was denied the right to learn long division because of her gender, her father removed her from that district school and taughter her himself.

In 1837, the Anthony family was hit hard by the financial Panic of 1837. They lost almost everything they owned, and moved to Hardscabble (later Center Falls), New York. Susan began teaching to help pay off her parents' debts. Her teaching occuplation inspired her to fight for wage equality, since male teachers at that time earned roughly four times the wages of female teachers.

In the decade before the American Civil War, Anthony took a prominent role in the New York anti-slavery and temperance movements. After the Civil War, discouraged that those working for abolition were willing to continue to exclude women from voting rights, Anthony became more focused on woman suffrage. She helped to found the American Equal Rights Association in 1866, and in 1868 - with Elizabeth Cady Stanton as editor - Anthony became publisher of Revolution. The publication's motto was: "The true republic - men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less." Ironically, the publication was backed by a man - independently wealthy George Francis Train, who provided $600 in starting funds.

Stanton and Anthony founded the National Woman Suffrage Association, which became larger than its rival American Woman Suffrage Association. Both organizations merged in 1890. But, before that date, Anthony was arrested by a U.S. Deputy Marshal for alleged illegal voting in the 1872 Presidential Election two weeks earlier. She was tried and convicted seven months later, despite the stirring and eloquent presentation of her arguments that the recently adopted Fourteenth Amendment, which guaranteed to "all persons born or naturalized in the United States" the privileges of citizenship, and which contained no sex qualification, gave women the constitutional right to vote in federal elections. The sentence was a fine, but not imprisonment, and the trial gave Anthony the opportunity to spread her arguments to a wider audience than ever before.

Anthony died about fifteen years before the successful passage of the 19th Amendment, which gives women the right to vote. She died on 13 March 1906 from heart disease and pneumonia of both lungs. She had taken ill while on her way home from the National Suffrage Convention in Baltimore that year. She died without ever marrying, and she had no children.

In 1979, Susan B. Anthony's image was chosen for the new dollar coin, making her the first woman to be depicted on US currency. The size of the dollar was, however, close to that of the quarter, and the Anthony dollar never became very popular. But, the Susan B. Anthony House in Rochester, New York, is maintained as a legacy to this American civil rights leader. This house, which Anthony lived in, was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1965 and now operates as a museum.

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