Lot 4: Anthony, Susan Brownell. Typed letter signed ("Susan B. Anthony")
November 15, 2012
Calabasas Hills, CA, USALive Auction
Anthony, Susan Brownell. Typed letter signed ("Susan B. Anthony"), 1 page, (8 x 10 ¾ in.; 203 x 273 mm.) on "National-American Woman Suffrage Association" letterhead, "Rochester, New York," 10 January 1900 to an unnamed correspondent. Tipped to a larger leaf. There is minor paper loss to the bottom right edge and top right corner.
Susan B. Anthony - Champion of Women's Rights.
Anthony pens in full: "My Dear Sir, -- Enclosed is a petition from the national woman suffrage association of your State, duly signed by its president and secretary, which I wish to ask you to present in the Senate at the earliest opportunity. Since the right of petition is the only political means by which women can speak to Congress, I trust that you will present this appeal from disfranchised constituents with the most earnest request for its careful consideration. Hoping to hear from you favorably, I am, Very sincerely yours, Susan B. Anthony".
The battle for women's suffrage lasted more than a century, though its birth as a national movement is generally acknowledged to be 1848 at the Women's Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, New York. Beginning with a grass-roots effort in new states, where the first legislative victories were won, the movement soon erupted onto the national scene. The debate, however, was not always civil and enlightened; opponents argued that a sweeping change in the status quo would wipe away the distinctions between the sexes, and that a strong faction of women voters would "thwart" the electoral voice of African-Americans. By 1918, President Woodrow Wilson - faced with numerous protests and hunger strikes - changed his position from a "hands-off" policy of states rights to advocacy of a Constitutional amendment. The suffrage movement culminated with the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment in 1920. A wonderful statement from the leader of the women's suffrage movement - a summation of her life's work and core conviction.