Women’s Reasons for Desiring to Vote
National Citizen and Ballot Box – July 1880
The work of reading these thousands of postals and letters and selecting from among them for publication, has required the labor of two persons over two weeks, and a portion of this time three persons were engaged upon it. Although but comparatively a small portion of them has been given, they form a very remarkable, unique, instructive and valuable addition to the literature and history of woman suffrage.
They not only show the growth of liberty in the hearts of women, but they point out the causes of this growth. Each letter, each postal, carries its own tale of tyrannous oppression, and each woman who reads, will find her courage and her convictions strengthened. Let every woman who receives this paper religiously preserve it for future reference. Let those who say that women do not want to vote, look at the unanimity with which women in each and every state, declare that they do wish to vote,—that they are oppressed because they cannot vote—that they deem themselves capable of making the laws by which they are governed, and of ruling themselves in every way.
These letters are warm from the heart, but they tell tales of injustice and wrong that chill the reader’s blood. They show a growing tendency among women to right their own wrongs, as women have ofttimes in ages before chosen their own ways to do. Greece with its tales of Medea and Clytemnestra; Rome and the remembrance of Tofania and her famous water; southern France of more modern times all carry warning to legal domestic tyrants.
Matilda Joslyn Gage
- The State Department of Michigan, six names, send congratulations and believe that “taxation without representation” is the basest tyranny.
- The W. S. A. of Big Rapids, addresses a letter to National Nominating Convention asking for an amendment to the constitution. Lucy F. Morehouse, Prest. W. S. A. and twenty-eight others.
- The Frankfort N. W. S. A. appointed a committee of three to canvass the town and ascertain the opinion of the women on the suffrage question, which committees after a thorough canvass are enabled to submit the following report, and appended names in favor, viz: 111 in favor, 28 approved, 21 indifferent.—Mrs. S. M. Harden, Ch. of Com. Frankfort.
- The following reasons come from Decatur Mich.:—It is my belief that woman by the use of the ballot could prohibit intemperance. —MRS. G. H. THOMPSON.
- I believe in woman suffrage because it is our inherent right. MRS. H. N. HOPKINS.
- I am in favor of woman suffrage because it is woman’s right.—MRS. ELVIRA M. HOPKINS.
- We are obliged to obey laws and it is only right that we should have a voice in electing our law-makers.—SADIE LUMBARD.
- I want to vote because I believe it to be a right, because it would increase the power for good which I wish to exercise, because it would greatly advance all moral reforms and do much to bring about “peace and good will to men.”—MRS. H. UPTON.
- Representation or no taxation.—MRS. MARTHA P. KENDALL.
- One reason why I think women should vote is, as a general rule I believe they would vote for sober and virtuous rulers, and when we have such rulers the people will not mourn as they now do.—MISS A. TROWBRIDGE.
- I pay taxes, therefore think I have a right to vote.—MRS. L. M. BURNEY.
- Statesmen without whiskey.—LUCINDA BENNETT.