N THE INTEREST OF VOTES FOR WOMEN
THE KNOXVILLE EQUAL SUFFRAGE LEAGUE.
Edited by Emma Farrand Tyler.
SUSAN B. ANTHONY
To the editor of the Suffrage department
of The Journal and Tribune.
Madam:—The following statement regarding Susan B. Anthony has appeared
in newspapers all over the country:
"She was unalterably opposed to political partisanship, believing that the
suffrage could be obtained only through
the assistance of its friends in all parties."
Historical evidence does not bear out
In 1869, at the first national convention of the National Association. Miss
Anthony's position was enunciated by
the president in the following words:
"No harmonious action on any
question can ever be secured except
as a strict party measure. Hence
we appeal to the party in power."
In 1872, after all the parties had,
through their platforms, taken their
stand on the Woman Suffrage isue (sic.), an
appeal was sent out in the name of the
National Woman Suffrage association.
"Women of the United States."
it read, "the hour for political
action has come! For the first time
in the history of our country woman has been recognized in the platform of large and dominant party."
The appeal then went on to explain
the refusal of the democratic party and
of the liberal party, under the leadership of Horace Greeley, to support the
demand of women, and closed with an
impassioned appeal to women of all parties to lay aside all party affiliations and
work for the success of the republican
"Let us throw our whole influence
of voice and pen into this campaign
and. in making it a success for the
republican party, make it a success
for ourselves. Do not hesitate, do
not vacillate: let no party or personsal
consideration bias you to act against
the republican party at this momen-
tous crisis. Remember that we
owe it a debt of gratitude that it
has made for us this opportunity,
that it has thus launched our cause
into the political arena, where it
must go on and on, till justice for
women shall at last triumph, in a
true republic; a government of the
people, by the people and for the
On behalf of the National association,
SUSAN B. ANTHONY. President.
MATILDA JOCELYN GAGE,
Chairman executive committee.
The Rev. Olympia Brown, who was
one of the leaders of the white house
demonstration on March 4th, was one
of the pioneers who campaigned for the
republican party in this campaign of
1872, as a result of that appeal to women.
In June, 1872, Miss Anthony said:
"My view of our true position, is
to hold ourselves as a balance of
power, to give aid and comfort to
any party which shall inscribe on
its banners 'Freedom for Women.' If
I am a republican or liberal or
democrat, per se, and work for that
party right or wrong (that is, regardless of the record and position
of that party on Woman Suffrage)
then I make myself and my coworkers no added power for or
against the one which adopts or rejects our claims for recognition.
"I do not expect any man to see and act with me here,
but I can-
not understand how any woman can
do otherwise than refuse to accept
the party that ignores her sex."
This party policy she adhered to with
undeviating devotion, regardless of the
label of the party in power. In 1878
she said, replying to criticisms of her
"It is not that I have no opinions
on the many and grave questions
that distract and divide the parties,
but it is that, in my judgment, the
right of self government for one-
half of the people is of far more
vital consequence to the nation than
any or all other questions."
In 1894 she again took a party position; this time against both the democratic and republican parties and in favor of the populist party.
On page 792 of the Life of Susan B.
Anthony, by Ida Husted Harper, we
find Miss Anthony quoted as saying:
"I am for Woman Suffrage, and
will work with any party that will
help us. Remember I say "'with,'
not 'for' "
In reply to a letter from Mrs. Carrie
Chapman Catt to Miss Anthony (quoted
on this same page), discussing the probable results of Miss Anthony's position
in favor of the populists. Miss Anthony
On page 794 of the same volume we
find her replying to a criticism from
Henry B. Blackwell because she was
supporting the populist party.
"I have not allied myself with any
party nor shall I ally myself with,
any party, save the one of justice
and equality for women; but the time
has come when I strike, and proclaim my contempt for the tricksters
who put their political heel on the
rights of women at the very time,
when their help is needed most. I
never, in my whole forty years
work, so utterly repudiated any set
of politicians as I do those republicans of Kansas. When it is a
mere matter of theory, a thousand
miles away from a practical question, they can 'resolve' pretty words,
but, when the crucial moment comes
they sacrice(sic). us without conscience
or honor. The hubbub with the
republicans shows that they have
been hit in the right place."
Then, reasserting that same splendid
gospel of loyalty of women to women
that she had proclaimed in 1872,
twenty-two years before, she said:
"I was never surer of my position
that no self-respecting woman should
wish or work for the success of a
party that ignores her political
This was the identical position taken
by the Congressional Union and the
Woman's party in the recent campaign.
It endorsed no candidate or party, but
opposed the party in power, which, with
the power to act, refused by official
caucus vote, to aid the cause of women.
After reading the papers today, and
noting the small consideration given to
the disfranchised women who, forgetting
the fight of women for women, gave
their aid to the democratic party, regardless of its opposition to their sex, I
am wondering if perhaps they will not
ponder deeply on Miss Anthony's words
"I cannot understand how any
self-respecting woman can do otherwise than refuse to accept any party
that ignores her sex."
HELEN HILL WEED.
Research chairman, Congressional Union
for Woman Suffrage.
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