Seneca Falls … Casino?July 19, 2008
The last time I went Internet researching, I found what became the title of a blog (“Married but Looking”) when I entered “women’s rights” into a search engine. This time, I specifically wrote in “Seneca Falls” in preparation for honoring the anniversary of what many consider the founding of the women’s right movement — the Seneca Falls Convention of July 19–20, 1848. So what came back first on the list from my search? The Seneca Falls Casino. If you step back and compare the two, there is a similarity between them. In my opinion, the history of the women’s movement can certainly be described as a lot of preparation for what has become a crap shoot — you win some, you lose some.
According to Martin Kelly at About.com,
The idea for the convention came about at another protest meeting: the 1840 World Anti-Slavery Convention in London. At that convention, the female delegates were not allowed to participate in the debates. Lucretia Mott wrote in her diary that even though the convention was titled a “World” convention, “that was mere poetical license.” She had accompanied her husband to London, but had to sit behind a partition with other ladies such as Elizabeth Cady Stanton. They took a dim view of their treatment, or rather mistreatment, and the idea of a women’s convention was born.
Here are some interesting links focusing on the Seneca Falls Convention and the suffrage movement in general:
- Women’s Rights, National Historical Park, Seneca Falls, New York (National Park Service)
- The original Declaration of Sentiments, crafted by Stanton and signed during the convention
- One Hundred Years Toward Suffrage: An Overview (1175–1923), from the National American Woman Suffrage Association Collection Home Page, Library of Congress
- An Introduction to the Women’s Suffrage Movement from the Image Gallery of the National Women’s History Project
- A view of today’s women’s rights issues from Human Rights Watch
Of course, AAUW has been an advocate for women’s rights, breaking through barriers by advancing equity for women and girls since 1881. Our own history (visit the AAUW Museum) shows numerous examples of successes. Listen to one of AAUW’s founders, Marion Talbot, as she describes AAUW’s history in a 1945 radio program. And if you aren’t already doing so, use this anniversary to be an advocate for women and girls.