The following poem appeared in The North Star, October 3, 1850. The author of the poem, Ebenezer Elliot leaps to woman's defense, although, to those of us of the 21st century, the defense might seem to echo some of the same presumptions about woman's nature that the woman's rights activists sought to dispel. The newspaper was edited by Frederick Douglass , a former slave turned abolitionist, who consistently advocated woman's rights.
What highest prize hath woman won
In science, or in art?
What mightiest work, by woman done,
Boast city, field, or mart?
"She hath no Raphael! Painting saith;
"No Newton! Learning cries;
"Show us her steamship! her Macbeth!
Her thought-won victories!"
Wait, boastful man! though worthy are
Thy deeds, when thou are true;
Things worthier still, and holier far,
Our sisters yet will do;
For this the worth of woman shows,
On every peopled shore,
That still as man in wisdom grows,
He honors her the more.
Oh, not for wealth, or fame, or power,
Hath man's meek angel striven,
But, silent as the growing flower,
To make of earth a heaven!
And in her garden of the sun
Heaven's brightest rose shall bloom;
For woman's best is unbegun!
Her advent yet to come!