Remembering William Ella Rose

Carol Kolmerten on Ernestine and William Rose

"…Unlike most 19th century women, Rose had a husband who worked to support her causes. She was freed by his enterprise as a jeweler and silversmith to travel throughout the United States and Europe preaching her causes. I (that is Carol) believe that his part of her story is my favorite: how her husband, who was her closest friend, stayed at home working to cover the costs of her militant causes. From all I can find on their marriage — and it is not much, as Rose, the public person, needed some private space — Ernestine Rose and William were partners, intellectual equals and lifetime soul mates. He worked in New York City; she lectured to the world."

From Kolmerten, "The American Life of Ernestine L. Rose," p. xxiv

Ernestine Rose on William Ella Rose

"I am a married women: have been married over 20 years; have a husband, and, as far as individual rights are concerned, I have as many as I ought to have. But I do not thank the laws for it. And why? Because it happens that my husband is 'a law unto himself,' there is no need of any other law; and, therefore, we might say, Abolish all laws, because there is one who is a law unto himself. But what are laws made for? Not for my husband, nor for myself either; but for those who recognize no law but their own passions and lusts, and their own rights, at the expense and sacrifice of the rights of everyone else." Quoted in "The American Life of Ernestine L. Rose," p. 206.