There are many lines across the United States today as voters queue up at polling stations to cast a ballot for the next president. But in Rochester, New York there’s another special line: people are queuing up in front of Susan B. Anthony’s grave to cover her gravestone with “I Voted Today” stickers.
In a WROC Facebook live video, one voter after another makes her way through Mount Hope Cemetery, where they pay tribute to the suffragette, and take pictures with the tombstone overflowing with stickers and flowers.
Susan B. Anthony led the American suffrage movement and was an icon in the fight for woman’s voting rights in the 19th century. She was arrested in 1872 for voting illegally and died in 1906 without having the right to vote. The 19th Amendment of the US constitution, which prohibits US citizens from being denied to vote on the basis of sex was ratified 14 years later, in 1920.
The sticker tribute is a relatively recent tradition that may have begun in 2014 after the midterm elections by Susan Jane McPike who made the gesture a symbol of respect and gratitude, according to the Huffington Post. The cemetery has embraced the practice and announced that it will remain open until 9pm today, an hour later than usual.
“It’s an historic time to choose to come. It’s an amazing moment,” Nora Rubel, director at the Susan B. Anthony Institute of University of Rochester, tells USA Today, after paying paying her own “I voted” tribute.
This election is exceptionally moving for nonagenarians and centenarians who were alive when women couldn’t vote and have lived to see the day when they are able to vote for a woman for president. In support of Hillary and the suffragettes, people are also wearing all-white outfits (using the #WearWhiteToVote hashtag) and pantsuits to the polling stations.