|Isabella Beecher Hooker threw herself into the
woman's rights movement among the earliest, some sixty years ago, and she
labored with all her splendid energies in that great cause all the rest
of her life; as an able and efficient worker she ranks immediately after
those great chiefs, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Mrs. Livermore.
When these powerful sisters entered the field in 1848 woman was what she
had always been in all countries and under all religions, all savageries,
all civilizations -- a slave, and under contempt. The laws affecting women
were a disgrace to our statute book. Those brave women besieged the legislatures
of the land, year after year, suffering and enduring all manner of reproach,
rebuke, scorn and obloquy, yet never surrendering, never sounding a retreat;
their wonderful campaign lasted a great many years, and is the most wonderful
in history, for it achieved a revolution -- the only one achieved in human
history for the emancipation of half a nation that cost not a drop of blood.
They broke the chains of their sex and set it free.
- Autobiographical dictation, 1 March 1907. Published in Autobiography of Mark Twain, Volume 3 (University of California Press, 2015)
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