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Harriet Lafetra

Harriet Lafetra 1823-1906, a Hicksite Quaker from Shrewsbury, led Monmouth county residents in petitioning the state legislature on behalf of women’s rights and woman suffrage.

The New Jersey Assembly responded to Lafetra’s petition to grant legal equality to women under state law with the 1857 Report of the Assembly Committee on Women’s Rights. The report expresses common arguments against equal rights for women; it also cites Biblical law as the authority for women’s subordinate position.

Questions to Explore

What are some of the arguments the New Jersey Assembly made against equal rights for women?

How did Harriet Lafetra lead Monmouth residents to petition for women’s rights and woman suffrage?

Additional Resources

Gabrielan, Randall. Shrewsbury. United States: Arcadia Publishing, 1996.