Elizabeth Bisbee

From Ohio History Central

Elizabeth Bisbee was an early women's rights activist in Ohio. She established a newspaper, the Alliance, in Columbus before the American Civil War. Bisbee used the paper to fight for equal rights for women with men. She and other women's rights supporters in Ohio gained few successes. Although these people emphasized women's desire to vote, the Ohio Constitution of 1851 denied women this right. In 1852, the Ohio legislature did pass a law to protect women working outside of the home, however, state authorities refused to enforce it. In 1861, married women, assuming that their husbands had abandoned them, received the right to own property and to make contracts. While these legislative acts were improvements for women living in Ohio, men still retained tremendous power over women by the American Civil War.

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