In Lucretia Coffin was born in Nantucket, Massachusetts, on January 3, 1793. At the age of thirteen Lucretia was sent to a boarding school run by the Society of Friends. She eventually became a teacher at the school. her interest in women’s rights began when she discovered that male teachers at the school were paid twice as much as the female staff.
In 1811 Lucretia married James Mott, another teacher at the school. Ten years later, she became a Quaker minister. Lucretia and her husband were both opposed to the slave trade and were active in the American Anti-Slavery Society.
In 1840, Mott and her friend, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, traveled to London as delegates to the World Anti-Slavery Convention. Both women were furious when they, like the British women at the convention, were refused permission to speak at the meeting. Stanton later recalled: “We resolved to hold a convention as soon as we returned home, and form a society to advocate the rights of women.”
However, it was not until 1848 that Mott and Elizabeth Cady Stanton organized the Women’s Rights Convention at Seneca Falls. Stanton’s resolution that it was “the duty of the women of this country to secure to themselves the sacred right to the elective franchise” was passed, and this became the focus of the group’s campaign over the next few years.
In 1866 Mott joined with Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Lucy Stone to establish the American Equal Rights Association. The following year, the organization became active in Kansas where Negro suffrage and woman suffrage were to be decided by popular vote.
Lucretia Mott, who remain active in the woman’s rights movement into her seventies, died in Abinton on November 11, 1880.