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But I am not prepared to say that it is
one of her fundamental rights and privileges to be admitted into
every office and position, including those which require highly
special qualifications and demanding special responsibilities. In
the nature of things it is not every citizen of every age, sex,
and condition that is qualified for every calling and position.
It is the prerogative of the legislator to prescribe regulations
founded on nature, reason, and experience for the due admission
of qualified persons to professions and callings demanding
special skill and confidence. This fairly belongs to the police
power of the State; and, in my opinion, in view of the peculiar
characteristics, destiny, and mission of woman, it is within the
province of the Legislature to ordain what offices, positions,
and callings shall be filled and discharged by men, and shall
receive the benefit of those energies and responsibilities, and
that decision and firmness which are presumed to predominate in
the sterner sex.

For these reasons I think that the laws of Illinois now
complained of are not obnoxious to the charge of abridging any of
the privileges and immunities of citizens of the United States.

* * * * *

I concur in the opinion of Mr. Justice Bradley. FIELD, J.

D. W. MIDDLETON, C. S. C. U. S.

The result of this suit taught woman that for her civil as well as
political rights she had no National protection. This was the first
case under the XIV. Amendment that was decided by the Supreme Court of
the United States. This august body based its decision against Mrs.
Bradwell on the ground of "no jurisdiction," declaring that the case
rested with the Legislature of the State of Illinois. In language
stripped of legal verbiage and obscurity, it decided that the civil
rights of women could be extended and restricted at the caprice of any
legislative body in the several States; that the methods for earning
their daily bread, in the trades and professions, the use of their
powers of mind and body, could be defined, permitted or denied for the
citizen by State authorities.

In Norwalk, Connecticut, long known as the Gibralter of republicanism
in that State, Mrs. Sarah M. T. Huntington was allowed to register by
sufferance of the selectmen whose objections she overcame by a logical
argument upon the constitutional provisions under the XIV. Amendment,
but she was not permitted to vote (see Connecticut chapter). At the
same election several ladies voted in Nyack, New York, and in Toledo,
Ohio, and many unsuccessful attempts were made by others in several
States of the Union.

It was on November 1st, 1872, at her quiet home in Rochester, while
reading her morning paper, that Miss Anthony's eye fell on the
following editorial:

Now Register? To-day and to-morrow are the only remaining
opportunities. If you were not permitted to vote, you would fight
for the right, undergo all privations for it, face death for it.
You have it now at the cost of five minutes' time to be spent in
seeking your place of registration, and having your name entered.
And yet, on election day, less than a week hence, hundreds of you
are likely to lose your votes because you have not thought it
worth while to give the five minutes. To-day and to-morrow are
your only opportunities. Register now!

She immediately threw aside her journal, and asking one of her sisters
to accompany her, made her determined way to the registration office.
The inspectors were young men, entirely unversed in the intricacies of
constitutional law, so that when Miss Anthony expounded to them the
XIV. Amendment, they were utterly incapable of answering her legal
argument. After some hesitation the two Republican members of the
board agreed to receive her name, while the Democratic official
remained obdurate. The United States Supervisor being present strongly
advised the young men against refusing to allow Miss Anthony to
register. A full report of this scene appeared in the afternoon papers
with varying comments; the Republican paper inclined toward a
favorable view of the right of women to vote, while the Democratic
paper denounced these proceedings and warned all inspectors that if
they received the names of women they would be liable to prosecution
under the 19th section of the enforcement act.

That if at any election for representative or delegate in the
Congress of the United States, any person shall knowingly
personate and vote, or attempt to vote, in the name of any other
person, whether living, dead, or fictitious; or vote more than
once at the same election for any candidate for the same office;
or vote at a place where he may not be lawfully entitled to vote;
or vote without having a lawful right to vote; or do any unlawful
act to secure a right to vote, or an opportunity to vote, for
himself or any other person; or by force, threats, menace,
intimidation, bribery, reward or offer, or promise thereof, or
otherwise unlawfully prevent any qualified voter of any State of
the United States of America, or of any Territory thereof, from
freely exercising the right of suffrage; or by any such means
induce any voter to refuse to exercise such right; or compel or
induce, by any such means or otherwise, any officer on any
election in any such State or Territory to receive a vote from a
person not legally qualified or entitled to vote or interfere in
any manner with any officer of said elections in the discharge of
his duties, shall be deemed guilty of a crime and shall for such
crime be liable to prosecution in any court of the United States,
and on conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine not
exceeding $500 or imprisonment for not exceeding three years or
both at the discretion of the court.

Upon reading this article Miss Anthony hastened back to the
registration office and assured the young men that she would be
personally responsible for all costs growing out of any suit that
might be instituted against them for having registered women. As an
outgrowth of all this discussion about fifty women registered in the
city, fourteen of them in Miss Anthony's own ward. As a whole, the
tone of the press was so adverse that all the inspectors except those
of the 8th ward were intimidated and refused to receive the votes of
women on election day.

Bright and early on the morning of November 5th, Miss Anthony and six
of the women presented themselves at the polling booth. The ladies
went early not in order to vote often, but to avoid any disturbance
which might result from so novel a scene if it were enacted when the
streets had become crowded. Each of these new voters was in turn
challenged, and each swore in her vote, except Rhoda De Garmo, who in
true Quaker fashion refused either to "swear" or to "affirm," simply
saying "I will tell the truth." Nevertheless her vote was also
received.

The discussion of this action continued in the papers and on November
28th, Thanksgiving day, those fourteen offending citizens were
informed that they were to be prosecuted by the United States
Government, and that Commissioner Storrs wished them to call at his
office. The ladies refusing to respond to this polite invitation,
Marshal Keeney made the circuit to collect the rebellious forces. It
was the afternoon of Thanksgiving day that Miss Anthony was summoned
to her parlor to receive a visitor. As she entered she saw her guest
was a tall gentleman in most irreproachable attire, nervously dandling
in his gloved hands a well-brushed high hat. After some incidental
remarks the visitor in a hesitating manner made known his mission.
"The Commissioner wishes to arrest you" were his first words touching
the object of his call. "Is this your usual method of serving a
warrant," asked Miss Anthony; whereupon the Marshal summoned courage
enough to serve the usual legal paper.[168] He gallantly offered to
leave his prisoner to go alone, but Miss Anthony refusing to take
herself to Court, the United States official meekly escorted her to
the Commissioner's office. When all the ladies had arrived, the
Commissioner, after hours of waiting, announced that the Assistant
District Attorney whom he had summoned to examine the culprits, was
unable to reach the city that afternoon, and so the ladies were
dismissed to appear the next morning.

The voters received their preliminary examination in the same small
dingy office where, in the days of slavery, fugitives escaping to
Canada had been examined and remanded to bondage. This historic little
room is a double disgrace to the American Republic, as within its
walls the rights of color and of sex have been equally trampled upon.

The fourteen women pleaded "not guilty," but the Commissioner ordered
bail of $500 each for their appearance at the Albany term of the
United States District Court January 21, 1873. Miss Anthony refused to
give bail, and petitioned for a writ of _habeas corpus_. The
Inspectors were also arrested, and had their final hearing the
afternoon of the same day before Commissioner Ely,--Hon. John Van
Voorhis their counsel--and were bound over to the Albany Term. The
hearing on Miss Anthony's petition was had before Judge Hall. The
decision was adverse, and bail of $1,000 demanded for her appearance
at the May term at Rochester. The Grand Jury found a true bill of
indictment against her, the fourteen other women, and the three
Inspectors. Miss Anthony objected to giving bail, but was overruled by
her counsel, Hon. Henry R. Selden, whose sense of gallantry made him
feel it a disgrace to allow his client to go to jail. This was a
source of deep regret to Miss Anthony, as it prevented her case going
to the Supreme Court of the United States for final adjudication.

During the intermediate period between November 28, 1872, and January
21, 1873, Miss Anthony, in the eye of the law, was imprisoned, but the
Marshal, though somewhat uneasy, left her free to fulfill her lyceum
engagements and attend woman suffrage conventions.



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