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American Women In History Essay

2046 words - 8 pages

AbstractAt one time women were denied the same beliefs we in the year 2004, take for granted in the United States of America. We all strive to live in a nation of religious freedoms. We have the ability to elect the government we support with taxes from monies we earn. We live free, with out the threat of enslavement. Over the past seventy years, significant social and legal changes have been accomplished regarding women. Women have come together to make changes through meetings, petition drives, lobbying, public speaking, and nonviolent resistance. They have worked to create a life that is full and fulfilling for women of all ages, everywhere.The History of Women in AmericaIn March of 1776, Abigail Adams, the wife of the United States second president John Adams, wrote one of her most famous letters to her husband, she insisted that in the constitution women have equal rights. She wrote, "" Remember the Ladies... If particular care and attention is not paid to the ladies we are determined to foment a rebellion and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice or representation." He did not listen to her. The women's movement ultimately began there.In the writing of the Constitution of the United States of America, women were not considered. In fact, they lost rights they had once had. Women were unable to vote, deprived of property rights, denied custody rights to their children, they were unable to sign legal documents, and were barred from testifying in court. Despite the Constitution's failure to grant legal rights to women or more to the point, because of it, an organized women's movement had appeared by the 1830's. (Cappon, Lester J., ed.)Elizabeth Cady Stanton was an informed and politically astute observer of the Underground Railroad. She knew its most major advocates through her husband Henry Stanton. Henry was an abolitionist lecturer and one of the founding members of the New York Anti-Slavery Society. In 1840 they married and Elizabeth asked that the word "obey" be omitted. They attended the World Anti-Slavery Convention in London, England on their honeymoon. Elizabeth Cady Stanton met Lucretia Mott, a founder of and delegate for the Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society. At the beginning of the Convention, male delegates argued whether women should take part. When the British excluded the American women delegates, Mott and Stanton discussed abolition and women's role in society and planned to hold a convention about women's rights upon their return home. (Banner, Lois W.)In July of 1848, Stanton called on other Quaker women concerned about abolition to host a first-ever convention for women's rights. Many of the organizers had strong personal connections to the New York Anti-Slavery Society, Philadelphia Female Anti-Slavery Society, and the Western New York Anti-Slavery Society. (Gurko, Miriam).Years later, Stanton recognized the important connection between abolition and women's rights in a speech before the...

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