7100 Churchill Road
March 2, 2006
Elizabeth Cady Stanton is known to many as a hero. She is a woman who put her thoughts into actions about women’s rights. Elizabeth worked for many different causes trying to gain women certain rights and stood as a role model to many women who worked by her side. All over the United States she gave women hope and encouraged them to fight for what they believed was right and just. The cause that she thought was the most important and worked the hardest for was Women’s Suffrage.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton played a key role in the Women’s Suffrage Movement. She put her main strength, writing, into action when working. Some of the documents that she wrote were the Declaration of Rights and Sentiments and The Women’s Bible. Through the Declaration of Rights and Sentiments, she formed a women’s version of the Declaration of Independence. In this piece, key topics such as voting for women, the right to attend universities and co-education, and the right to be admitted to trades, professions, and the ministry were discussed. In the Women’s Bible, Elizabeth picked out parts of the Bible that were offensive to women and added her own commentaries. Through this, she created a “manuel” for women’s rights. She even stood up for her beliefs against the church, giving her bad publicity. Her writings clearly communicated her ideas in a clear and powerful way, carrying her words to many.
Elizabeth was famous for holding meetings for discussing women’s rights as well. One of the most important meetings that she held was the Seneca Falls Convention, held in Seneca Falls New York from July 19-20 in 1848. This was the first women’s rights convention EVER held in the United States! Here Elizabeth was able to collect many men and women to support her cause. Also, she held the International Council of Women in 1888 in WashingtonD.C. where women all over the world could discuss women’s rights. Through out her lifetime, Elizabeth held meetings for the main members of the movement so all of the key ideas could be shared.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton understood that if changes were going to be made that would make a difference for women, many people would need to work together, probably for many years. To build support for her causes, Cady Stanton also started many organizations that contributed to the Women’s Suffrage Movement. One organization that she started was the A.E.R.A., which was the American Equal Rights Association. This program worked for both women and African Americans so both abolitionists and suffragists could join together. Next, Elizabeth and her partner, Susan Brownwell Anthony, founded the N.W.S.A. or the National Women Suffrage Association. This group worked strictly for women to gain the right to vote. Finally, the N.W.S.A. and the A.W.S.A. (American Women Suffrage Association) joined together to form the N.A.W.S.A. or the National American Women Suffrage Association, electing Cady Stanton as the president. Through the organizations, she was able to bring strong minds together to discuss important issues. Also, she was able to coordinate petitions and parades to support Women’s Suffrage. Finally, with such a high position, she had the authority to speak to highly ranked men who could change women’s voting rights.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton truly changed American history. She was the woman who started the Women’s Suffrage Movement (even sometimes called “the Mother of the Women’s Suffrage Movement) and continued to work with it even through the rough times. She encouraged herself and others to never give up. Even though she did not live long enough to ever see women vote, she died trying with positive thoughts that things would change. Your museum could not go on without my exhibit about the most important person in American History, Elizabeth Cady Stanton.