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Smith, Gerrit (1797-1874) Gerrit Smith to Susan B. Anthony

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC04717.55 Author/Creator: Smith, Gerrit (1797-1874) Place Written: Peterboro, New York Type: Printed letter Date: 5 February 1873 Pagination: 1 p. ; 33.1 x 20.4 cm.

Smith writes to Anthony, the legendary activist and reformer: "Why men have the ballot and women hav'nt it, and why they have so much else in which they refuse to let women share, originates in the simple fact, that the superior physical strength is on the side of man. I confess that such things go somewhat toward making me ashamed of being a man. Nevertheless, I am consoled by the thought that when men shall have become wiser and better, and exchanged their barbaric pride in their stronger and rougher sex for a sense of what they owe to the weaker and gentler one, they will be glad to do justice to women..." Discusses women's right to vote in relation to the Constitution of the United States.

Smith, a politician from New York, served as a U.S. Representative from 1853-1854. He was a noted philanthropist and social reformer active in anti-slavery campaigns and women's rights.

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