Elizabeth Cady Stanton was a leading figure in the women’s right movement of the 19th century, and was an advocate for rights that women nowadays take for granted. She was a social activist, and played an important role in the rights that women have today. Elizabeth Cady Stanton is one of the most influential people in history because not only did her acts affect women of her time, but they continue to play an important role in the lives of women today, and will continue to impact women’s rights in future generations.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton was born November 12, 1815, and was the eighth child in a family of eleven children. Five of the eleven children were boys, and four of the boys died as babies. Living in the 19th century, the family’s future was focalized upon the male successors, so when Stanton’s only living brother, Eleazar, passed away after just graduating from college, her father was devastated. Stanton said “At length, he heaved a deep sigh and said: "Oh, my daughter, I wish you were a boy!" Throwing my arms about his neck, I replied: "I will try to be all my brother was." This was a formative childhood event that led to Stanton’s fight for women’s rights, and against society's discriminatory approach to women, as this memory demonstrates preference of men over women. Despite Stanton’s desire to attend college, women were prevented from attending college during this time period, so she went to an all-girls school, where she was an outstanding scholar.
In May of 1840, Stanton married Henry Stanton, an abolitionist and social activist. Henry was industrious in the American Anti-Slavery Society, and supported women’s abolitionist groups. This is what made Henry and Elizabeth a wonderful pair. At their marriage ceremony, E. Stanton took out the words “to obey” from the vows, and opted to keep her maiden name, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, over being called Mrs. Henry Stanton. This demonstrated Stanton’s belief in women's equality with men and the fact that she believed that women were just as important as men, and just as entitled to keeping their name as men were.
Stanton was introduced to reform movements at a young age, even before she met and married Henry Stanton. One example was when she visited her cousin Gerrit Smith, and met refugee slaves, hiding at Smith’s place. While visiting London with Henry, who was attending an Anti-Slavery convention, Stanton met Lucretia Mott, a Quaker teacher who later was involved in Stanton’s Women’s Rights movement. “Denied her seat at the convention, as were all the women delegates, Mott discussed with Stanton the need for a convention on women's rights.” (“Women’s Rights”)
The idea materialized when the First Women’s Rights Convention was held in 1848 in Seneca Falls. This convention discussed the need for more women’s rights , and the “Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions,” was presented during the convention. The Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions was modeled after the declaration of...