Susan B. Anthony Organizes National American Women's Suffrage Association


One hundred years ago, women won the right to vote.

Part of the remarkable history of the suffrage movement is the lifelong friendship and partnership of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony. While Elizabeth Cady Stanton was the philosopher of the women’s movement, Susan B. Anthony became its most visible and prominent leader. Of the partnership between the two, it is said that Cady Stanton fashioned the thunderbolts and Anthony threw them. While Cady Stanton was bound to house and home with pregnancy and childbirth, Anthony traveled the country to spread the message.

Travel in the 19 Century was not comfortable. Campaigning in Kansas, Susan wrote home about rugged conditions and bed bugs, “We have not slept a wink for several nights, but even in broad daylight our tormentors are so active that it is impossible. We find them in our bonnets, and this morning i think we picked a thousand out of the ruffles of our dresses.”

In 1890, Anthony organized the National American Women’s Suffrage Association and became its first president. The organization had 2,000 members that year and grew to two million members by 1920, becoming the largest voluntary association in the United States. 

This message is produced­­­­ by the Kanawha Valley Chapter of the National Organization for Women with support from the West Virginia Humanities Council.