On a quiet, tree-lined street in a pleasant neighborhood in Rochester New York, is the home where Susan B. Anthony and her friends worked tirelessly to gain rights for women and minorities in the American political process.
This post contains affiliate links and sponsored travel. To learn more, read our DISCLAIMER here.
Susan B. Anthony’s Home in Rochester, New York
It was here in this pleasant three story home where Susan B. Anthony and people like Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Carrie Chapman Catt, Frederick Douglas worked to ensure that the voices of women, African Americans and all minorities in the United States could be heard on election day.
In this home, you’ll see the dining room table where she and Frederick Douglas often had tea, and the desk at which she composed her speeches and letters of debate. You’ll see her famous alligator purse and the bed in which she died in 1906 at 86 years old.
Just a few blocks away is a small pocket park that includes a bronze statue of Susan and her friend Frederick Douglass having tea. The I-490 bridge that crosses the Genessee River in Rochester is named for Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony.
Lessons from Susan B. Anthony’s Home
Actually, before they could enjoy the right to vote, Susan and her friends first had to work to earn women and minorities the right to even speak in public. Susan was once beaten and arrested for doing just that. In a land where free speech is guaranteed in the First Amendment, it was against the law for women and minorities to speak publicly.
Susan and her “radical” friends were arrested on many occasions. They were accused of trying to destroy the sanctity of marriage. When she suggested that blacks and whites could be educated together, she was accused of instigating social evils.
Susan B. Anthony was also arrested in the living room of this home and found guilty of voting in 1872. There’s a plaque in the courthouse in Canandaigua New York in the Finger Lakes where she was tried that reads “This is the place where liberty was denied.”
Susan lived long enough to see the “Anthony Amendment” introduced to Congress in 1878. However, she did not live to see her amendment, the 19th Amendment, ratified and become law, in 1920. It took forty-two years for the Anthony Amendment to become law.
She didn’t live long enough to see Jeannette Pickering Rankin elected as the first woman in Congress in 1916. Neither did she see Geraldine Ferraro become the first woman to be nominated as vice president of the United States in 1984.
Nor did Susan B. Anthony live long enough for a candidate for president of the United States to visit her home, to honor her work and sacrifices.
But those of us who have the privilege of voting today should indeed make an effort to visit Rochester and then get to the polls in November.