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163 Years Ago Today…

On this date in 1848, the first Convention for Women’s Rights opened in Seneca Falls, New York.  At the convention, the “Declaration of Sentiments" was read.  Following the model of the US Declaration of Independence, this declaration demanded that women be given the same respect and rights as men.

Reactions to the Declaration, in the media included:

The Oneida Whig wrote: “This bolt is the most shocking and unnatural incident ever recorded in the history of womanity. If our ladies will insist on voting and legislating, where, gentlemen, will be our dinners and our elbows? Where our domestic firesides and the holes in our stockings?”

Philadelphia’s Public Ledger and Daily Transcript declared: “A woman is nobody. A wife is everything. The ladies of Philadelphia … are resolved to maintain their rights as Wives, Belles, Virgins and Mothers.”

And the Albany Mechanic’s Advocate claimed that equal rights would “demoralize and degrade [women] from their high sphere and noble destiny, … and prove a monstrous injury to all mankind.”

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Even though some days it feels as though we still lag behind, its important to remember how far we’ve come.

{inspired by today’s writers’ almanac}