One night, crossing the Mississippi at McGregor, Iowa, we were icebound in the middle of the river. The boat was crowded with people, hungry, tired, and cross with the delay. Some gentlemen, with whom we had been talking on the cars, started the cry, “Speech on woman suffrage!” Accordingly, in the middle of the Mississippi River, at midnight, we presented our claims to political representation, and debated the question of universal suffrage until we landed. Our voyagers were quite thankful that we had shortened the many hours, and we equally so at having made several converts and held a convention on the very bosom of the great “Mother of Waters.” Only once in all these wanderings was Miss Anthony taken by surprise, and that was on being asked to speak to the inmates of an insane asylum. “Bless me!” said she, “it is as much as I can do to talk to the sane! What could I say to an audience of lunatics?” Her companion, Virginia L. Minor of St. Louis, replied: “This is a golden moment for you, the first opportunity you have ever had, according to the constitutions, to talk to your ‘peers,’ for is not the right of suffrage denied to ’idiots, criminals, lunatics, and women’?”
Much curiosity has been expressed as to the love-life of Miss Anthony; but, if she has enjoyed or suffered any of the usual triumphs or disappointments of her sex, she has not yet vouchsafed this information to her biographers. While few women have had more sincere and lasting friendships, or a more extensive correspondence with a large circle of noble men, yet I doubt if one of them can boast of having received from her any exceptional attention. She has often playfully said, when questioned on this point, that she could not consent that the man she loved, described in the Constitution as a white male, native born, American citizen, possessed of the right of self-government, eligible to the office of President of the great Republic, should unite his destinies in marriage with a political slave and pariah. “No, no; when I am crowned with all the rights, privileges, and immunities of a citizen, I may give some consideration to this social institution; but until then I must concentrate all my energies on the enfranchisement of my own sex.” Miss Anthony’s love-life, like her religion, has manifested itself in steadfast, earnest labors for men in general. She has been a watchful and affectionate daughter, sister, friend, and those who have felt the pulsations of her great heart know how warmly it beats for all.
As the custom has long been observed, among married women, of celebrating the anniversaries of their wedding-day, quite properly the initiative has been taken, in late years, of doing honor to the great events in the lives of single women. Being united in closest bonds to her profession, Dr. Harriet K. Hunt of Boston celebrated her twenty-fifth year of faithful services as a physician by giving to her friends and patrons a large reception, which she called her silver wedding. From a feeling of the sacredness of her life work, the admirers of Susan B. Anthony have been moved to mark, by reception and convention, her rapid-flowing years and the passing decades of the suffrage movement. To the most brilliant occasion of this kind, the invitation cards were as follows: