After spending three days in Boston, Massachusetts. And obviously loving the exploring of history and all, I had the luck of having an extra day off in part of my four day weekend. So without much planning and knowing that we could visit any where we wanted to. We decided to explore Washington County in upstate New York. Simply because of the thought we’d like to attend the Washington County Fair later in the day.
So just before heading out onto the road, we did some quick research, and learned through Wikipedia that there are numerous historic locations in the county. A total of 35 locations showed up with the first being the childhood home of Susan B. Anthony.
The childhood home is located in Battenville, New York. Anthony and her family moved here when she was 13 and then moved away when she was 19. As this house stands currently, it looks barely well maintained. Yet surprisingly still strong enough and not collapsing. The grass isn’t well mowed with perfection and there are vines growing up the side of the house.
While you look at the house you’ll notice the front retaining wall looks in great shape. But as you may not notice with reports on the internet or even by the view of my picture. That this house is on the side of the road. On a highway in which the speed limit is 55 miles per hour. There is no parking spots for visitors or even a pull off spot.
We had to take a risk just to get the few pictures we got. As we parked down the road a little in a abandon pull off area, in which look liked a factory or something had once been. Obviously this is a major problem for anyone trying to get a little history on who Susan B. Anthony is. And it saddens me that more care isn’t put into the location. Then again it’s much the major problem with the numerous blue historic signs located throughout the country. It’s just a small risk to learn about history.
Speaking of history and trying to understand who Susan B. Anthony is we must jump to the internet, as I attack Wikipedia to aid me in the teaching. Anthony lived for 86 years and she was featured on the dollar coin. But why is she still famous to this day?
She was born to a Quaker family and by the age of 17, while she must have still lived in this aforementioned house, she was petitioning for anti-slavery. For those wondering what year this was, let’s put it this way, she was born in 1820. Thus meaning this was decades before the Civil War and when Abraham Lincoln came on the scene fighting for the rights of those forced into slavery. Years before the Emancipation Proclamation, executive order issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863 in which all those entitled to be slaves would now become free.
Anthony would also fight for the rights of women, as she was one. She would form numerous groups as well as publicly speak for the rights of women. She would eventually be arrested in 1872. For get this, the simple act of voting. Yes, believe it or not, women couldn’t vote. Anthony would be found guilty of voting, she would be forced to pay a fine, a fine she wouldn’t end up paying. Something that local authorities wouldn’t get any more involved in.
According to Wikipedia “When she first began campaigning for women’s rights, Anthony was harshly ridiculed and accused of trying to destroy the institution of marriage.” Something that numerous people in our current day and time have been accused of.
When Anthony sadly died before the inevitable right for women to vote became law. But she has seen numerous states such as Wyoming, Utah, Colorado and Idaho, and several larger states followed soon after. Legal rights for married women had been established in most states, and most professions had at least a few women members. And there was 36,000 women were attending colleges and universities, up from zero a few decades earlier.
The 19th amendment which gave women the right to vote was passed on August 26th, 1920. Well over 14 years since she passed away.