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Southern Broadsheet Urges Opposition to Women’s Suffrage Because of its Support of Racial Equality and Opposition to Traditional Christianity
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This southern broadsheet opposes women’s suffrage because of its association with racial egalitarianism and anti-Christian views. It includes photographs of Susan B. Anthony’s “Three Immediate Women Friends”—Carrie Chapman Catt, the President of the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA); Rev. Anna Howard Shaw, a female Methodist minister who preceded Catt as the President of NAWSA; and Mrs. R. Jerome Jeffrey, a black resident of Rochester, who was frequently a guest at Anthony’s home. It also includes two controversial quotations by Catt and Anthony. Catt said, “Suffrage Democracy Knows no Bias of Race, Color, Creed or Sex.” In volume 2 of their History of Woman Suffrage, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony quoted the a May 1864 report of the Executive Committee of the Loyal Women’s National League, on which they both served: “Look not to Greece or Rome for heroes, nor to Jerusalem or Mecca for saints, but for the highest virtues of heroism, let us WORSHIP the black man at our feet.”[1]

The second and third pages are a reprint of an article entitled “Some Strange History” by James Callaway, first published in the Macon Daily Telegraph (Georgia) of May 26, 1918.

[1]Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Matilda Joslyn Gage, and Ida Husted Harper, eds., The History of Woman Suffrage, 6 vols. (Rochester, NY: 1881-1920), 2:84.

[WOMEN’S SUFFRAGE]. “The ‘Three Immediate Women Friends’ of the Anthony Family,” Anti-Women’s Suffrage Broadsheet, ca. 1919. Printed by Brown Printing Co., Montgomery, [Alabama]. 3 pp., 8⅞ x 11½ in.

Inventory #25869       Price: $2,500

Some Strange History

When Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Matilda Gage and their assistants compiled the ‘History of Suffrage’ they put some queer things in those volumes. One of the reasons why I was insistent that Miss Mary Custis Lee consent to the publication of her letter, settling for all time the slander published in the ‘Official History of Suffrage’ against General Lee, was because of the wide publicity given to the fabrication.

And this history, so widely circulated, carried that vicious falsehood against General Lee, the only one ever put on record—and spread by Miss Susan Anthony. The Mrs. Gage spokne of was the Matilda Gage, one of the revising committee of Cady Stanton’s ‘Woman’s Bible’—a book that rejects Christ and the New Testament and repudiates Moses and the Prophets.

History makes Fred Douglass the pet of a lot of ill-balanced old maids. Anna Dickinson was stuck on him. They were all anti-South and Douglass pleased them.

Miss Anthony, the great rage now with all suffrage associations, has the honor of having a stained glass window in this same negro church, as near to her dear Fred Douglass as the architects could arrange it.

But the compilers of the ‘Official History of Suffrage’ and the authors of ‘The Woman’s Bible’ have triumped. Their political and social creed is the fashion now. Through Dr. Shaw, Mrs. Carrie Chapman Catt and Mrs. Norman Whitehouse, Susan B. Anthony still lives. John Brown’s soul is marching on. They have about captured Washington. The House of Representatives has endorsed them. The creed of the old South is at a discount. ‘The Star of the North’ is in the ascendant. They demanded that States no longer be permitted to control the elective franchise, but that suffrage be nationalized and all things be placed under Federal control.[1]

The Senate hesitates. If it yields the South will again be the victim of that ‘terrorism’ in the rural districts which produced the ‘white woman’s problem.’ Here again, under universal suffrage and Federal control, it will be here—forever! Germany and all Socialists and suffragists hope the Senate will surrender and pass it.

It is a critical hour for the South—a crisis that involves her future civilization, her tranquillity and her prosperity.

Historical Background
In the post-Civil War South, and especially after his death in 1870, Robert E. Lee was revered as one of the central heroes of the Confederacy and a cultural icon. By the end of the nineteenth century, Lee’s popularity had spread to the North.

When they published volume 2 of their History of Woman Suffrage in 1882, Stanton and Anthony included this controversial paragraph: “Many women showed their love of country by sacrifices still greater than enlistment in the army. Among these, especially notable for her surroundings and family, was Annie Carter Lee, daughter of Gen. Robert E. Lee, Commander-in-Chief of the rebel army. Her father and three brothers fought against the Union which she loved, and to which she adhered. A young girl, scarcely beyond her teens when the war broke out, she remained firm in her devotion to the National cause, though for this adherence she was banished by her father as an outcast from that elegant home once graced by her presence. She did not live to see the triumph of the cause she loved so well, dying the third year of the war, aged twenty-three, at Jones Springs, North Carolina, homeless, because of her love for the Union, with no relative near her, dependent for care and consolation in her last hours upon the kindly services of an old colored woman. In her veins ran pure the blood of ‘Light-Horse Harry’ and that of her great aunt, Hannah Lee Corbin, who at the time of the Revolution, protested against the denial of representation to taxpaying women, and whose name does much to redeem that of Lee from the infamy, of late so justly adhering to it. When her father, after the war, visited his ancestral home, then turned into a vast national cemetery, it would seem as though the spirit of his Union-loving daughter must have floated over him, whispering of his wrecked hopes, and piercing his heart with a thousand daggers of remorse as he recalled his blind infatuation, and the banishment from her home of that bright young life.”[2]

When Union troops occupied the Lee family home in Arlington in June 1862, Robert E. Lee sent his daughters Annie and Agnes to a resort at Jones Springs (also known as White Sulphur Springs), outside of Warrenton, North Carolina. Annie Carter Lee died a few months later, on October 20, 1862, of typhoid fever, and was buried in a local cemetery. A Confederate soldier created an obelisk and placed it at her grave, and Robert E. Lee visited the cemetery in 1870, shortly before his death.

Between January 1918 and June 1919, the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate voted on an amendment to the United States Constitution permitting women to vote in all states and election. Each vote was close, but Southern Democrats continued their opposition. On May 21, 1919, the amendment passed the House by a vote of 304 to 89, well more than the two-thirds necessary. On June 4, Southern Democrats abandoned a filibuster, and the Senate passed the amendment by a vote of 56 to 25, and the President transmitted it to the states for ratification. The proposed amendment prohibited the denial of the right to vote on the basis of sex.

By the end of 1919, 22 states had ratified the amendment, and 13 more followed in the first three months of 1920, fewer than eight months before the November presidential and congressional elections. When Tennessee became the thirty-sixth state to ratify it on August 18, 1920, the amendment became part of the Constitution, culminating seventy-two years of effort on behalf of women’s suffrage.

The southern states of Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Mississippi, Delaware, and Louisiana considered and rejected the amendment in 1919 and 1920; Florida and North Carolina did not consider it. Delaware ratified it in 1923 and Maryland in 1941, but most of these states did not ratify the 19th Amendment until the 1950s to early 1970s. Mississippi became the last state to ratify it in 1984.

James Callaway(1847-1920) was born in Washington, Georgia, and attended Mercer University in 1862. The following year, he joined the Georgia Reserves and was a guard at the notorious Andersonville Prison. He later transferred to Charleston, South Carolina, where he was a quartermaster sergeant until he contracted typhoid fever and was sent home. After the war he graduated from Mercer University in 1868, and read law in Americus, Georgia. He gave up the study of law to become a farmer, but soon became a journalist with an Albany newspaper. He then accepted a position with the Macon Daily Telegraph to do editorial work. Callaway was a staunch defender of the southern racial order and for the Confederacy. Confederate Veteran magazine included an obituary for him in the July 1920 issue, which praised Callaway: “For his manly defense of the truth of history, so far as it relates to the South, the Confederate soldier, and to the immortal Davis, Lee, Jackson, and other chieftans under the Stars and Bars, and his homage to the women of the South he deserves a monument to his memory.”

[1]This and the following paragraph suggest that Callaway’s editorial may have appeared in May 1919, not May 1918, as the House approved the proposed 19th Amendment on May 21, 1919, and the Senate followed on June 4.

[2]Ibid., 2:22-23.

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