Susan B. Anthony was convinced by her work for temperance that women needed the vote if they were to influence public affairs. She was introduced by Amelia Bloomer to Elizabeth Cady Stanton, one of the leaders of the women's rights movement, in 1851 and attended her first women's rights convention in Syracuse in 1852.
Anthony and Stanton believed the Republicans would reward women for their work in building support for the Thirteenth Amendment by giving them the vote. They were bitterly disappointed when this did not happen.
In 1866 Anthony and Stanton founded the American Equal Rights Association and in 1868 they started publishing the newspaper The Revolution in Rochester, with the masthead "Men their rights, and nothing more; women, their rights, and nothing less," and the aim of establishing "justice for all."
In 1869 the suffrage movement split, with Anthony and Stanton's National Association continuing to campaign for a constitutional amendment, and the American Woman Suffrage Association adopting a strategy of getting the vote for women on a state-by-state basis. Wyoming became the first territory to give women the vote in 1869.
In the 1870s Anthony campaigned vigorously for women's suffrage on speaking tours in the West. Anthony, three of her sisters, and other women were arrested in Rochester in 1872 for voting. Anthony refused to pay her streetcar fare to the police station because she was "traveling under protest at the government's expense." She was arraigned with other women and election inspectors in Rochester Common Council chambers. She refused to pay bail and applied for habeas corpus, but her lawyer paid the bail, keeping the case from the Supreme Court. She was indicted in Albany, and the Rochester District Attorney asked for a change of venue because a jury might be prejudiced in her favor. At her trial in Canandaigua in 1873 the judge instructed the jury to find her guilty without discussion. He fined her $100 and made her pay courtroom fees, but did not imprison her when she refused to pay, therefore denying her the chance to appeal.
In 1877 she gathered petitions from 26 states with 10,000 signatures, but Congress laughed at them. She appeared before every congress from 1869 to 1906 to ask for passage of a suffrage amendment. Between 1881 and 1885 Anthony, Stanton and Matilda Joslin Gage collaborated on and published the History of Woman Suffrage. The last volume, edited by Anthony and Ida Husted Harper, was published in 1902.
In 1887 the two women's suffrage organizations merged as the National American Woman Suffrage Association with Stanton as president and Anthony as vice-president. Anthony became president in 1892 when Stanton retired. Anthony campaigned in the West in the 1890s to make sure that territories where women had the vote were not blocked from admission to the Union. She attended the International Council of Women at the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago.
In 1900, aged 80, Anthony retired as President of NAWSA. In 1904 Anthony presided over the International Council of Women in Berlin and became honorary president of Carrie Chapman Catt's International Woman Suffrage Alliance.
Susan B. Anthony died in 1906 at her home on Madison Street in Rochester. All American adult women finally got the vote with the Nineteenth Amendment, also known as the Susan B. Anthony Amendment, in 1920.