Trial of Susan B. Anthony
In 1872, after the ratification of the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution, the women’s suffrage movement in the United States adopted a new strategy. Arguing that the right to vote was one of the “privileges and immunities” guaranteed to every citizen by that amendment, the women were inspired to put this interpretation to the test in practice by attempting to register and vote in the November election. In Rochester, NY, fourteen women, including Susan B. Anthony, were successful. Within days after having cast their votes, however, they were arrested, as were the three election inspectors who had received their votes. Suspecting that a Rochester jury might be sympathetic to Miss Anthony, the prosecution requested a change of venue to the nearby city of Canandaigua, where trials were held in June 1873. Intense public interest in the proceedings led the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle to publish this pamphlet in 1874. Here is the transcript of Miss Anthony’s trial, including (in section 9) her justly famous remarks at her sentencing. Here also is the transcript of the election inspectors’ trial, as well as addresses given by Susan B. Anthony and Matilda Joslyn Gage, and an analysis by John Hooker critical of the trial’s irregularities.
Genre(s): Modern (19th C)