Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) women sparked the revolutionary vision of early feminists by providing a model of freedom at a time when American women experienced few rights. Women of the Six Nations Confederacy possessed decisive political power, control of their bodies, control of their own property, custody of their children, the power to initiate divorce, satisfying work and a society generally free of rape and domestic violence. Historian Sally Roesch Wagner recounts the struggle for freedom and equality waged by early American women documenting how Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, and Matilda Joslyn Gage were influenced by their Indigenous women neighbors.
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