When the women and men who gathered at the first women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York, put those words to paper in 1848, it was an aspirational statement.
American women couldn’t vote, hold office, attend college, or earn a living other than as a teacher, domestic or mill worker, or seamstress. A married woman couldn’t divorce her husband, gain custody of her children, or own property of any kind. The Seneca Falls convention, and the Declaration of Sentiments it produced, began the long work of changing that.
One day before she cast her ballot for her mom, Hillary, to become the first woman president of the United States, Chelsea Clinton stopped by Seneca Falls to see the place where a few courageous Americans first came together to demand full equality for women.
Photography by Nicole Michaelis