Participants of the First Women's Rights Convention

"Report of the Woman's Rights Convention held in Seneca Falls, NY" in July 1848.
Report of the Woman's Rights Convention, Seneca Falls 1848.


How did five women manage to organize and accomplish the 1848 First Women's Rights Convention held in Seneca Falls, with just ten days notice?

They had help! As part of a community of social reformers and abolitionists they turned to their friends and allies, knowing they would respond to their call.

On Sunday July 9, five reform-minded women met at the home of Jane Hunt and in the course of their day together, they concluded to hold a convention "to discuss the social, civil, and religious rights of Woman."

Call to SF convention Seneca County Courier July 14 1848.
Call to the First Women's Rights Convention as it appeared in the Seneca County Courier, July 14, 1848.

Seneca County Courier, July 14, 1848.

Two days later they placed the first of several ads in the local newspaper, the Seneca Courier. Through their abolitionist and Quaker connections, the event was announced in the North Star, a Rochester based abolitionist newspaper published by Frederick Douglass.

Frederick-Douglass-to-Elizabeth M'Clintock accepting invitation to the convention.
Frederick Douglass to Elizabeth M'Clintock, accepting her invitation to the Seneca Falls Convention, dated July 14, 1848.

NPS Women's Rights National Historical Park, Neely Collection, WORI 7589.

Word spread. Not only through newspapers, but by word of mouth. And on July 19th and 20th, one hundred women and men signed the Declaration of Sentiments, written by some of the organizers and amended and adopted by the majority of those in attendance.

The Declaration of Sentiments outlined the demands, goals and means to achieve them.

Meet some of the Signers and Organizers.

Last updated: April 4, 2023

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