Susan B. Anthony’s Gavel
1888, American History Museum
America’s leading suffragist won the greatest civil rights battle of her time
Fined $100 for voting in the 1872 presidential election, defiant Anthony—“I will never pay a dollar of your unjust penalty,” she told the judge—had co-founded the National Woman Suffrage Association, which gave her this ivory-headed gavel; it became a talisman of the women’s movement. Before she died, in 1906, she told a friend “it seems so cruel” that her struggle for “a little liberty” would outlive her. Victory came in 1920, when the 19th Amendment granted women the vote.