JANUARY 3, 1793–NOVEMBER 11, 1880
Lucretia Mott was born in Nantucket, Massachusetts, in 1793. She was a minister, abolitionist, and women’s rights activist. Mott is often recognized as one of the first major leaders of the American women’s rights movement.
Mott’s Quaker faith informed her beliefs that slavery was morally wrong and that men and women should be treated equally. A devoted abolitionist, in the 1820s she became a Quaker minister, delivering powerful lectures on the evils of slavery. Over the next several years, she joined or helped form numerous anti-slavery groups. She also began working for women’s rights. At the World Anti-Slavery Convention in 1840, she met and befriended Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Women were not allowed to participate in the convention because of their gender, which frustrated both Mott and Stanton. In 1848, the two women organized the Seneca Falls Convention. After the Civil War, Mott became the first president of the American Equal Rights Association, which later split into the National Woman Suffrage Association and the American Woman Suffrage Association.
In her later years, Mott was admired by many for her steady commitment to gender and racial equality. She continued her women’s rights activism well into old age, speaking at and attending conventions into the late 1870s. She died in 1880 at age 87.
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