Portrait of Susan B. Anthony

Susan B. Anthony is frequently recognized as the most influential leader in the struggle for women’s suffrage in America. [Wikimedia Commons]

Susan B. Anthony - Facts

February 15, 1820–March 13, 1906

Key facts about the life of women's rights activist Susan B. Anthony

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Full Name

  • Susan Brownell Anthony

Birth Date

  • February 15, 1820

Birth Location

  • Adams, Massachusetts

Parents

  • Daniel and Lucy Read Anthony

Education

  • Deborah Moulson’s Female Seminary

Occupation

  • Organizer and lecturer for American abolitionist, temperance, and women’s suffrage movements

Career Summary

  • Agent for the American Anti-Slavery Society
  • Co-author of the History of Woman Suffrage
  • President of the National American Woman Suffrage Association

Spouse

  • None

Place of Death

  • Rochester, New York, U.S.

Date of Death

  • March 13, 1906

Place of Burial

  • Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester, New York

Significance

  • Susan B. Anthony was the second oldest of Daniel and Lucy Read Anthony’s eight children.
  • Susan B. Anthony was raised in a Quaker household, although her mother was not a member of the religion.
  • Susan B. Anthony’s parents and several of her siblings were lifelong progressives who, like their more famous sister, supported abolition, temperance, and equal rights for women.
  • In 1837, Susan B. Anthony traveled to Philadelphia to attend Deborah Moulson’s Female Seminary, but her education was cut short when her father was financially ruined by the Panic of 1837.
  • Susan B. Anthony became a lifelong friend of Frederick Douglass after meeting the famed black abolitionist and former slave on her family’s farm near Rochester, New York, during the 1840s.
  • Anthony got her first extended exposure to life outside of Quaker society in 1846 when she accepted a position as headmistress of the female department of the Canajoharie Academy, located in eastern New York.
  • In 1849, Susan B. Anthony was elected president of the Rochester branch of the Daughters of Temperance.
  • In 1851, Susan B. Anthony met Elizabeth Cady Stanton in Seneca Falls, New York, marking the beginning of a lifelong friendship and a milestone in the history of the women’s rights movement.
  • Along with Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony helped found the Woman’s New York State Temperance Society in 1852.
    In 1856, Susan B. Anthony became an official agent of the American Anti-Slavery Society.
  • During the Civil War, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton collaborated to form the Women’s Loyal National League, focusing on the enactment of a 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to abolish slavery in the United States.
  • In 1866, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton helped found the American Equal Rights Association (AERA).
  • In 1869, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton left the American Equal Rights Association and founded the exclusively female National Woman Suffrage Association (NWSA).
  • From 1868 to 1872, Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton published a weekly newspaper entitled The Revolution that featured articles concerning sex education, rape, domestic violence, marriage, divorce, oppressive women’s fashions, prostitution, and reproductive rights.
  • After The Revolution failed financially, Susan B. Anthony personally paid off the publication’s $10,000 debt using proceeds from her lecture fees.
  • Following ratification of the 14th and 15th amendments (July 28, 1868, and February 3, 1870), Susan B. Anthony adopted the position that the changes to the Constitution enfranchised American women as well as former male slaves.
  • On November 18, 1872, a United States deputy marshal arrested Susan B. Anthony for knowingly voting on November 5, 1872, without having the lawful right to do so.
  • On December 23, 1872, a federal grand jury indicted Susan B. Anthony on the charge that she “did knowingly, wrongfully and unlawfully vote for a Representative in the Congress of the United States….”
  • During the trial of Susan B. Anthony v. the United States, presiding Judge Ward Hunt refused to let Susan B. Anthony testify on her own behalf.
  • On the second day of the trial of Susan B. Anthony v. the United States, presiding Judge Ward Hunt ordered the jury to render a guilty verdict before they could deliberate or vote.
  • On June 19, 1872, at the conclusion of the trial of Susan B. Anthony v. the United States, presiding Judge Ward Hunt sentenced Susan B. Anthony to pay a fine of $100 plus court costs.
  • After being sentenced to pay a fine of $100 plus court costs at the conclusion of the trial of Susan B. Anthony v. the United States, Susan B. Anthony defiantly responded that “I shall never pay a dollar of your unjust penalty.” She never paid the fine.
  • Three years after the trial of Susan B. Anthony v. the United States, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, in the case of Minor v. Happersett, that “the Constitution of the United States does not confer the right of suffrage upon anyone.” The court’s decision nullified the strategy of seeking redress through the judicial system.
  • During the 1876 U.S. Centennial Celebration in Philadelphia, Susan B. Anthony interrupted the proceedings by marching to the speaker’s platform and presenting acting U.S. President Thomas Ferry with a four-page document entitled the Declaration of Rights of the Women of the United States.
  • During the late 1870s, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Matilda Joslyn Gage began collaborating to write the History of Woman Suffrage. The prolific work, published in three installments in 1881, 1882, and 1886 respectively, chronicled the annals of the women’s suffrage crusade from 1865 to 1885.
  • In 1883, Susan B. Anthony traveled to Europe, where she and Elizabeth Cady Stanton collaborated with leaders of European women’s movements to lay the groundwork for the International Council of Women (ICW), which was founded in 1888.
  • In 1892, members of the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) elected Susan B. Anthony as the organization’s second president.
  • Susan B. Anthony was president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) from 1892 to 1900.
    On October 26, 1902, Anthony, who never married, suffered a devastating blow when her kindred soul, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, succumbed to heart failure.
  • In 1904, Susan B. Anthony helped found the International Woman Suffrage Council.
    Susan B. Anthony died from heart failure and pneumonia, at the age of eighty-six, in her home in Rochester, New York, on March 13, 1906.
  • In 1978, U.S. President Jimmy Carter signed the Susan B. Anthony Dollar Coin Act, which replaced the existing dollar coin with one bearing Anthony’s image.
  • Susan B. Anthony is the first woman to have her likeness emblazoned on a coin.
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Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Article Title Susan B. Anthony - Facts
  • Coverage February 15, 1820–March 13, 1906
  • Author
  • Website Name American History Central
  • Access Date November 28, 2021
  • Publisher R.Squared Communications, LLC
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update April 29, 2021
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