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NEWS & IDEAS

Did You Know... Susan B. Anthony Was Once Arrested for Voting? More on the Stand She Took and the Impact She Made

Happy Birthday, Susan B. Anthony! On this day in 1820, the woman who became one of the most important voices of early American feminism and equal rights was born. A true MAKER of her time, Anthony was arrested in 1872 for voting in the Presidential Election. She was tried, convicted and fined $100, which she insisted she would absolutely not pay.

Anthony began her activism in the anti-slavery and temperance movements. When a male temperance group refused to let her speak at a convention, Anthony united with Elizabeth Cady Stanton to create a temperance organization for women. Their goals evolved into equal rights, and they traveled the States advocating women's equality and eventually joined together on the women's rights weekly journal The Revolution that largely promoted African American and women's suffrage.

By the time Anthony cast her illegal vote--she voted the Republican ticket--she was a fixture of the women's suffrage movement who stood against the "man-made, unjust, unconstitutional forms of law, which tax, fine, imprison and hang women, while denying them the right of representation in the government."

On Anthony's birthday, let's celebrate the doors she opened and the model for perseverance she molded for the women who would come after her.

NEXT MAKER Emily May, for example, co-founder and executive director of HollaBack! recalls how her aunt gave her a book about Susan B. Anthony when she twelve. She was amazed at how although everyone thought Anthony was "nuts," she kept moving forward with the motto "failure is not an option."

Anthony may never have actually been able to legally vote, but her work made it possible not too far in the future...and she never did pay that $100 fine. 

Happy Birthday, Susan B. Anthony!

 

Photo Credit: Getty Images