She Paid the Price // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

On February 15, 1894, Susan B. Anthony gave a speech at the National American Woman Suffrage Association is Washington D.C.

Anthony and her friend, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, had founded the organization twenty five years earlier –for the purpose of gaining voting rights for women.

For years, Susan B. Anthony had labored for the voting rights cause. Once, she was even arrested and convicted for the horrible crime of registering and voting.

In this particular speech, given on her 74th birthday, at the Opera House on the corner of 12th and F, she proclaimed:

“We shall someday be heeded, and when we shall have our amendment to the Constitution of the United States, everybody will think it was always so, just exactly as many young people believe that all the privileges, all the freedoms, all the enjoyments which women now possess always were hers.

“They have no idea of how every single inch of ground that she stands upon today has been gained by the hard work of some little handful of women in the past.”

The Nineteenth Amendment giving women the freedom to vote, was not passed until August 26, 1920, thirteen years after Susan B. Anthony’s death.

Susan B. Anthony and friends occasionally grew weary in the struggle. There were certainly times of great discouragement and disappointment.

As Rosabeth Moss Kanter said, “Everything looks like failure in the middle.”

John Maxwell reminds us, “You know when you’re on the road to success. It’s uphill all the way.”

Susan B. Anthony was willing to take the hill. She gave it all for the greater cause.

Was it worth it? Ask any woman at the voting polls on the first Tuesday of November.

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