Women of Note 2013

December 31, 2013

Fae Adams, the first woman to serve as an Army doctor, graduated from the Woman’s Medical College of Pennsylvania in 1951. She was born on the first day of the year.

December 30, 2013

In 1994 Andrea Jung was the first Asian-American woman and first woman of color to become CEO of a Fortune 500 company (Avon Products).

December 29, 2013

The “Shop Girls” from Granite Falls, Washington was the first all-female team to compete in Shell Oil Company’s Eco-team Competition. The high school students designed a vehicle for the competition that they christened The Iron Maiden.

December 28, 2013

Born on Dec. 28, Eliza Lucas Pinckney (1722-1793) changed agriculture in colonial South Carolina. She developed indigo as a cash crop and it grew to one-third of the value of the colony’s exports before the Revolutionary War. She was the first woman inducted into South Carolina’s Business Hall of Fame.

December 27, 2013

On December 27, 1987, Gayle Sierens was the first woman to do a play-by-play for a National Football League game, Kansas City vs. Seattle.

December 26, 2013

General Evangeline Cory Booth (1865–1950) was the 4th General of the Salvation Army from 1934 to 1939. She was its first female General.

December 25, 2013

HOLIDAY GREETINGS to all FIRST WOMEN TO. . .past and present, and to their families, friends, and loved ones.

December 24, 2013

Clara Barton was born on Christmas Day in 1821. She was founder and first president of the American Red Cross

December 23, 2013

Sarah Breedlove (1867-1919), known as Madam C. J. Walker, was an American entrepreneur and philanthropist, regarded as the first female self-made millionaire in America. She made her fortune by developing and marketing a successful line of beauty and hair products for black women.

December 22, 2013

Ann Hasseltine Judson (1789–1826) was one of the first female American foreign missionaries. She was the first Protestant to translate any of the scriptures into Thai when in 1819 she translated the Gospel of Matthew. She was born on December 22.

 December 21, 2013

Laura Bridgman (1829-1889) is thought to be the first deaf-blind American child educated in the English language, fifty years before Helen Keller. She was born four days before Christmas.

December 20, 2013

Susanne Langer (1895–1985) was the first woman to be popularly and professionally recognized as an American philosopher. Her book Philosophy in a New Key, published in 1942, posited that humans have a need to create symbols.

December 19, 2013

In May of this year Col. Jeannie Flynn Leavitt became the first woman to command a combat fighter wing. She had been the first female fighter pilot and flew combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

December 18, 2013

Elsie de Wolfe, is considered the first interior decorator. Her book The House in Good Taste, published in 1913, set styles for a generation. I wonder what she would have recommended for the upcoming holidays?

December 17, 2013

Founded by women doctors in 1862, the New England Hospital for Women and Children was the first training school for nurses and was staffed by women.

December 16, 2013

In 1875 Wellesley College instituted the first rowing program for women when a new gymnasium for exercising and a lake for ice skating were inaugurated.

December 15, 2013

Can you guess which “progressive” state had the first publicly funded college for women in the United States? Mississippi. Mississippi University for Women, founded in 1884 is affectionately called “the W.”

December 14, 2013

Margaret Chase Smith (1897-1995) was a woman of firsts: first woman to represent Maine in the House; first woman to represent Maine in the Senate; first woman to serve in both the House and Senate; first woman nominated by a major political party for president of the US; first member of Congress to condemn the Joseph McCarthy anti-Communist witch hunt. She was born on this date before the beginning of the twentieth century.

December 13, 2013

Patricia Palinkas, placekick holder for her husband in 1970, was the first woman to play professional football in the United States. Her husband’s career was short, and so was hers.

December 12, 2013

Elizabeth Ann Seton (1774-1821) was the first native-born citizen of the United States to be canonized by the Catholic Church.

December 11, 2013

Rita Moreno was the first Hispanic woman to win an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony. Today is her birthday.

December 10, 2013

Annie Jump Cannon (1863–1941) was an American astronomer who helped develop our  contemporary stellar classification system. She was the first woman to receive an honorary degree from Oxford University and the first woman elected to the American Astronomical Society.

December 9, 2013

The Abbott English Opera Company was the first opera company formed by a woman in the United States, in 1877. Emma Abbott’s husband Eugene Wetherell managed the business side of the company while she managed the artistic aspects.

December 8, 2013

Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992) was an American computer scientist and United States Navy Rear Admiral. She was the first director of automatic programming for the Ecker-Mauchly Computer Corporation and worked on compiler-based programming languages for UNIVAC.

December 7, 2013

When Pearl Harbor was attacked in 1941, Anna Leah Fox was wounded while serving as head nurse at Hickam Field. She was the first woman be awarded the Purple Heart, for being wounded during conflict.

December 6, 2013

Paula Ackerman was the first woman in the United States to perform rabbinical duties. Although not ordained she served in synagogues in Meridian, Mississippi in the 1950’s and later in Pensacola, Florida. Her birth date is tomorrow.

December 5, 2013

Patsy Takemoto Mink was the first Asian-American woman to serve in Congress. She served the state of Hawaii for 24 years.

December 4, 2013

Ann Shaw Carter(1922-2005) was the first woman licensed to fly helicopters, in 1947. Dec. 5 is the date of her birth.

December 3, 2013

In 1873 Ellen Swallow Richards earned her B.S. degree from MIT, the first woman to be admitted. After graduating she became the first women professional chemist in the United States. She was born on this date in 1842.

December 2, 2013

Elizabeth Cabot Agassiz (1822-1907), a researcher of natural history and an American educator, was the co-founder and first president of Radcliffe College.

December 1, 2013

 It is possible Frances Whitcher (1811–1852) was the first woman prose humorist in the United States. She created Widow Bedott to skewer the fashions and mores of New England in the 1840’s.

November 30, 2013

In 1969 Shirley Chisholm, of New York, became the first African-American woman in Congress. She was born this date in 1924.

November 29, 2013

Ten years ago the United States government created the position of Secretary of Homeland Security. Four years ago President Barack Obama selected the first woman to head the agency: Janet Napolitano. Today is her birthday.

November 28, 2013

In 1924 Nellie Tayloe Ross was elected the governor of Wyoming. The first–and only–woman to fill this position, she was the first woman to serve as a state governor in the U.S. (Born November 28, 1876)

November 27, 2013

Kathryn Bigelow was the first woman to win an Academic Award for directing. She won in 2010 for her movie The Hurt Locker. Today is her birthday.

November 26, 2013

Helen McGill White (1853-1944), a Quaker, believed she was entitled to the same education as a man. She was the first woman to be awarded a Ph.D. in the United States, in Greek, from Boston University in 1877. Her birth date was November 28.

November 25, 2013

Kate Gleason was the first woman president of a national bank in the United States. This is her birth date.

November 24, 2013

Louisa May Alcott, whose birthday is later this week, was the first woman to register to vote in Concord, Massachusetts, in a school board election.

November 23, 2013

Hetty Green (1834-1916) was the first American woman to make a substantial impact on Wall Street. She was nicknamed “The Witch of Wall Street.” Supposedly this was because of her frugality, but one might wonder if gender played a part.

November 22, 2013

Jerrie Mock was the first woman to fly solo around the world, 27 years after it was attempted by Amelia Earhart.  November 22nd was the date of her birth.

November 21, 2013

More on Phoebe Omlie: She completed a double parachute jump, cutting away her first chute and opening another, in 1921. She was also the first woman to hold a government aviation post, as technical advisor to the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. Her birth date in November 21.

November 20, 2013

Phoebe Omlie was the first woman to earn an aircraft mechanic’s license, in 1927 in Memphis Tennessee. She held several firsts in the field of aviation including the highest altitude parachute jump.

November 19, 2013

In 1999 Lt. Col. Eileen Collins was the first woman astronaut to command a space shuttle mission. Today is her birthday.

November 18, 2013

In 1985 Wilma Mankiller, born on this day, became the first woman chief of the Cherokee Nation.

November 17, 2013

Grace Abbott (1878-1939) was the first woman to be nominated for a Presidential cabinet position but she was not confirmed. She was born on Nov. 17.

November 16, 2013

Linda Darnell was the first woman to sell securities on the New York Stock Curb Exchange–in 1941.

November 15, 2013

Californian Julia Morgan, known for designing the Hearst Castle, was admitted to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris in 1898. She was the first woman to receive this honor.

November 14, 2013

Condoleeza Rice was the first African-American woman to serve as Secretary of State. Today is her birthday.

November 13, 2013

Although she was not eligible to vote, Elizabeth Cady Stanton was the first woman to run for election to the US House of Representatives. An independent, she received 24 votes out of 12,000 cast.

November 12, 2013

Margaret Corbin fought in the Revolutionary War, crewing a cannon at Fort Washington–and was the first woman in US history to receive a pension for her service. Her birth date was November 12th.

November 11, 2013

Ruth J. Simmons (born 1945) was the first female African-American president of a major college (Smith College), and first African-American president of an Ivy League college (Brown University).

November 10, 2013

In 1954 Dorothy Dandridge was the first African-American nominee for Best Actress for her role in Carmen Jones. Yesterday was her birth date.

November 9, 2013

In 1948 Alice Coachman was the first black woman to win an Olympic gold medal. She was the first woman of color to be a member of the US track and field team. Today is her birthday.

November 8, 2013

Florence Chadwick (1918-1995), a 32-year old typist from California, was the first woman to swim the English Channel in both directions. Her birth date is Nov. 9

November 7, 2013

Susan Bagley, in 1846, was the first woman in America to be a telegraph operator.

November 6, 2013

Arizona holds the distinction of being the first state where a woman governor, Janet Napolitano, succeeded another woman governor, Jane Dee Hull.

November 5, 2013

Sara Lee was the first corporation to make a major commitment to female athletics with a $6 million donation to the NCAA in 1990.

November 4, 2013

In 1979 Dr. Sylvia Earle was the first person in the world to dive to a depth of 1,250 feet. She led an all-woman team of scientists in an experiment in undersea living, staying for two weeks in a submerged capsule in the Caribbean Sea.

November 3, 2013

Elsie Worthington Clews Parsons (1875-1941), an anthropologist, sociologist, and folklorist who studied Native American tribes in the Southwest, was elected the first female president of the American Anthropological Association, shortly before her death.

November 2, 2013

Rebecca Ann Latimer Felton (1835-1930) was the first women to serve in the United States Senate. She served 24 hours after taking the oath of office. At 87 years, 9 months and 22 days of age, she was the oldest freshmen to enter the Senate. She is still the only woman to have served from the state of Georgia.

November 1, 2013

Mary Walker  (1832-1919) is the only woman, and one of only eight civilians to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor, for her service as a surgeon in the Civil War. After crossing enemy lines to treat the wounded, she was arrested by the South as a spy and became a prisoner of war.

October 31, 2013

Shirley Dinsdale was the first woman to receive an Emmy award. She had an early children’s television show and received the award for Outstanding Television Personality in 1949. Today is her birth date.

October 30, 2013

Gertrude Atherton, in 1934, was the first woman president of the National Academy of American Literature. She was born on this date.

October 29, 2013

Louise Atcherson Curtis took the Foreign Service exam in 1922. She was the first female permitted to take the exam and had the third-highest score that year.

October 28, 2013

In 1876 Nell Saunders defeated Rose Harland in the first United States women’s boxing match, and received a silver butter dish as a prize.

October 27, 2013

When the first university-based school of social work at the University of Chicago, was established in 1920, Edith Abbott became the first woman to be dean of an American graduate school.

October 26, 2013

A Double First: Hillary Clinton was the first First Lady ever elected to national office when she won election to the US Senate from New York. She was also the first woman to win a presidential primary. Today is her birthday.

October 25, 2013

Mahalia Jackson (1911-1972) was the first gospel singer to perform at New York’s Carnegie Hall.

October 24, 2013

In 1879 Belva Ann Lockwood became the first woman admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court. She was born in 1830 on this date.

October 23, 2013

This is a day for women adventurers. Born on this date in 1905, Gertrude Ederle, an American, was the first woman to swim the English Channel. On this day in 1934 Jeanette Piccard set an altitude record of 57,579 feet for female balloonists.

October 22, 2013

Lillian Gatlin was the first woman to fly across the continent. She completed this undertaking in 27 hours and 11 minutes in 1922 and tomorrow is the anniversary of her feat.

October 21, 2013

Consuelo Bailey was elected lieutenant governor of Vermont in 1955 and served as president of the state Senate. She had previously served as speaker of the state House of Representative, making her the only woman in the country ever to preside over both chambers of a state legislature.

October 20, 2013

Arlene Francis, host of “Blind Date,” was the first woman host of a television game show. October 20 is her birth date.October 19, 2013

October 19, 2013

Annie Smith Peck was the first woman to reach the top of the Matterhorn. In 1895 her feat was a press sensation, especially since she wore knickerbockers. In 1909 she was the first person to climb  the 21,000 foot Mount Huscaran peak in Peru. She was 82 when she made her last climb on Mount Madison in New Hampshire.

October 18, 2013

Bertha K. Landes of Seattle, Washington, was the first woman to lead a major American city. Appointed acting mayor in 1924 she was elected in her own right two years later, after a campaign run by women.

October 17, 2013

In 1992 Mae Jemison was the first black woman to become an astronaut. Today is her birthday.

October 16, 2013

 Harriot Hunt (1805–1875) was the first American woman to apply to Harvard Medical School. She was denied entrance–twice!

October 15, 2013

Marie Luhring responded to a shortage of engineers after World War I by studying to become the first woman automotive engineer. She worked for International Motors Company until her death.

October 14, 2013

On October 14, 1944, Ann Baumgartner flew the Bell YP-59A and became the first woman to fly a jet aircraft.

October 13, 2013

In 1959 Hannah Arendt, a German-American political theorist became the first woman lecturer at Princeton. Her work was on the nature of power, politics, democracy, authority and totalitarianism.

October 12, 2013

Eleanor Roosevelt (1884 — 1962) was the first presidential spouse to hold press conferences, speak at a national convention, or write a newspaper column.

October 11, 2013

On October 11, 1984, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan was the first American woman to “walk” in space.

October 10, 2013

The first women convicted of lesbian activity in the United States? Mary Hammon and Goodwife Norman were charged with “lude behavior uppon a bed” in 1649.

October 9, 2013

Mary Ann Shadd Cary (1823-1893) was the first female African American newspaper editor and publisher in North America. She was also the first black woman to cast a vote in a national election.

October 8, 2013

In 1639 Margaret Brent became the first woman land owner in Maryland. She demanded rights for single women and advocated for women’s right to vote.

October 7, 2013

Penny Ann Early was the first female jockey and the first woman to play in a professional basketball league. Her horse races were boycotted and she only played for the length of a thrown inbound ball, but she was first.

October 6, 2013

The all-male military Citadel, in response to a court order, admitted women in 1996. Sharon Faulkner was the first woman to be admitted, Nancy Ruth Mace the first to graduate.

October 5, 2013

Susana Martinez was the first female Hispanic governor in the United States. She is currently Governor of New Mexico.

October 4, 2013

The first woman to serve as director of a major corporation was Lettie Pate Whitehead (1872 – 1953). She was appointed to the Coca-Cola board in 1934.

October 3, 2013

In 1933 President Franklin Roosevelt appointed Ruth Bryan Owen (1885-1954) minister to Denmark. She was the first woman to hold a major diplomatic post. She was also Florida’s first woman representative in the United States Congress.

October 2, 2013

Ann Smith Franklin published the Newport, Rhode Island Mercury, the first female printer and publisher in the colonies. The business was inherited from her husband, Benjamin Franklin’s brother. Today is her birth date.

October 1, 2013

Hannah Adams (1755–1831), who learned Latin and Greek by listening to her father’s divinity students, has the distinction of being the first woman who was a professional writer in the United States. Tomorrow is her birth date.

September 30, 2013

Mary Frederika “Freda” Kirchway (1893-1976) was the first woman whose name appeared at the top of the masthead of a national weekly newsmagazine, when she was editor of The Nation.

September 29, 2013

Ann Bancroft was the first woman to complete dangerous expeditions to both the Arctic and Antarctic regions. Today is her birthday.

September 28, 2013

Madeleine May Kunin was the first and only woman governor of Vermont. She was also the first Jewish woman to be elected governor of any U.S. State. Today is her birthday.

September 27, 2013

The first woman to serve as a college president, at Evanston College for Ladies in Illinois, was Frances Willard (1839 – 1898), also a suffragist and warrior for workers’ rights. Sept 28 was the date of her birth.

September 26, 2013

Christine Todd Whitman was the first woman who served in a presidential cabinet-level position after serving as a governor. From the State of New Jersey, she was appointed by President George W. Bush to be administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. Today is her birthday.

September 25, 2013

May Sutton broke English Women’s stronghold on championships at Wimbledon when she won the singles tournament in 1905.  The British were perhaps more shocked that she wore a dress that exposed her ankles and rolled up her sleeves to play.

September 24, 2013

Frances Ellen Watkins Harper (1825-1911) was the first woman to teach sewing at the Union Seminary. She was also an African-American poet (first published at age 20), author, public speaker, abolitionist and worked with the Underground Railroad. This is the date of her birth.

September 23, 2013

Victoria Claflin Woodhull, born on this date, was the first woman to run as a presidential candidate in the United States in 1872. Nominated by the National Radical Reformers, she was a candidate 48 years before women received the right to vote.

September 22, 2013

Muriel Box wrote the screenplay for The Seventh Veil and was the first woman to receive an academy award for a screenplay (in 1946). She was born on this date.

September 21, 2013

Ellen Church was the first woman flight attendant–in 1930. She proposed to Boeing that having nurses in this position would ease passenger’s fear of flying. Tomorrow is the date of her birth.

September 20, 2013

In 1925 Representative Mae Ella Nolan became the first woman to chair a congressional committee. A Republican from California, she chaired the Committee on Expenditures in the Post Office Department.

September 19, 2013

Anna Low, in 1918, was the first Chinese-American woman aviator.

September 18, 2013

Founded in 1636, Harvard did not have a woman president until 2007 when Drew Gilpin Faust was inaugurated. Today is her birthday.

September 17, 2013

Louise Bethune is believed to be the first American woman architect. She was definitely the first female associate of the American Institute of Architects, accepted in 1888.

September 16, 2013

Florence Kelley (1859-1943) campaigned for workers’ rights. She was the first general secretary of the National Consumers League when it was founded in 1899.

September 15, 2013

Marguerite Higgins Hall (1920 – 1966) was a war correspondent during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War. She was the first woman to receive a Pulitzer Prize (in 1952) for international reporting, sharing the award with five men.

September 14, 2013

Prudence Crandall (1803-1890), raised a Quaker, admitted a 17-year old African-American girl to her Canterbury, Connecticut private school, making that the first integrated classroom in the United States.

September 13, 2013

When Mary Jane Patterson’s slave parents were freed, they moved to Ohio and she became the first African-American to receive a B.A. degree–from Oberlin College in 1862

September 12, 2013

In 1928, Eula Pearl Carter Scott (1915-2005), after training by Wiley Post, soloed in an airplane at 13. She was the first woman elected to the Chickasaw Nation legislature.

September 11, 2013

The first woman to receive the Pulitzer Prize for Drama was Zona Gale (1874-1938), in 1921.

September 10, 2013

AS US OPEN FINALS APPROACH, let us remember Billie Jean King’s achievement. In 1984 she became the commissioner of World Team Tennis, the first woman head of a professional athletic league.

September 9, 2013

AS THE U.S. OPEN CONTINUES, let’s celebrate when Chris Evert, in 1989, became the first tennis player, male or female, to rack up 1,000 wins.

September 8, 2013

Phoebe Couzins (1842-1913) was the first American to serve as a United States Marshal. She was also one of the first women to graduate from an American law school and her birth date is today.

September 7, 2013

Jane Addams was the first American woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, in 1931. She donated her share of the prize money to the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. Yesterday, September 7th, was the date of her birth.

September 6, 2013

Carly Fiorina was the first woman to head a Fortune 20 company. Today is her birthday.

September 5, 2013

In 1897 Amy Beach’s “Gaelic Symphony” premiered, the first symphony by a woman to be performed in the United States. She was born on this date in 1867.

September 4, 2013

THE U.S. OPEN IS IN FULL SWING – In 1971 Billie Jean King became the first woman athlete to win more than $100,000 in a single season in any sport. In 1973, due partly to her efforts, the US Tennis Association announced that men and women will receive equal prize money at the US Open.

September 3, 2013

On Sept. 2, 1910, Blanche Stuart Scott, then 19, became the first woman to fly a plane solo in Hammondsport, NY. Earlier that year she completed a cross-country trip in an Overland automobile with a woman journalist along to record the trip.

September 2, 2013

On September 2, 1909 Annie Smith Peck was the first person to climb the 21,000 foot Mount Huscarán peak in Peru. She was 82 when she made her last climb on Mount Madison in New Hampshire.

September 1, 2013

President Clinton appointed Dee Dee Myers as his press secretary. She was the first woman and the second-youngest person to hold this position. Sept 1 is her birthday.

August 31, 2013

Mary Corinna Putnam (1842 –1906), an American citizen, was the first woman admitted to the École de Médecine of the University of Paris. She graduated in July 1871, the second woman to get a degree there, and received second prize for her thesis.

 August 30, 2013

The first newspaper run completely by women was circulated in the late 1850’s. The “Women’s Advocate” was printed in Philadelphia and edited by Anne McDowell.

August 29, 2013

Carol Doda was the first topless (and later bottomless) stripper. Her career in San Francisco, California, resulted in numerous court appearances. Today, August 29, is her birthday.

August 28, 2013

Jeanne Pincha-Tulley is busy right now. She is one of 17 commanders in the United States qualified to command operations for fighting the fiercest Type I forest fires. She was the first woman to hold this position.

August 27, 2013

Yesterday’s papers announced the death of Muriel “Mickey” Siebert, the first woman to own a seat on the New York Stock Exchange. She was also the first woman to own and operate a brokerage firm on the NYSE. She was scheduled to be a woman of note on this site on September 11, which would have been her birthday.

August 26, 2013

Today is my sister’s birthday. Stephanie Kilpatrick is my hero, an amazing woman of daring and caring. She was the first woman to have me as a big sister.

August 25, 2015

In 1967 Althea Gibson was the first African-American tennis player (not just the first African-American woman) to win a singles title at Wimbledon. She was born on August 25 in 1927.

August 24, 2013

AS THE LITTLE LEAGUE WORLD SERIES FINISHES UP, remember Bunny Taylor who was the first girl in Little League Baseball to pitch a no-hitter.

August 23, 2013

Dr. Antonia Novello was the first woman, and first Hispanic, to be U.S. Surgeon General. Today, August 23, is her birthday.

August 22, 2013

WHILE LITTLE LEAGUE PLAYS ITS WORLD SERIES, we should remember Kathryn Johnson. In 1950 she was the first girl to play Little League Baseball. During the summer of 1950, she played for the King’s Dairy team in Corning, New York.

August 21, 2013

THE LITTLE LEAGUE BASEBALL WORLD SERIES IS UNDERWAY. After losing a lawsuit, Little League Baseball admitted girls in 1974.

August 20, 2013

Connie Chung was the first Asian-American woman reporter or nightly news anchor on a major network. Today, August 20, is her birthday.

August 19, 2013

Yesterday, August 18, was the birthday of Virginia Dare. When she was born in 1587, she was the first white person born in the British Colonies in North America.


In 1920, on August 18, the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States was ratified, granting women the right to vote.

 Margaret Gorman (1905-1995) was the first “Miss America” in 1921. She said, “I never cared to be Miss America,” but she kept her sequined gown from the competition. Her birth date is tomorrow, August 18.

August 16, 2013

In 1992 Carol Moseley-Braun of Illinois was selected to the US Senate, the first African-American woman. Today, August 16, is her birthday.

 August 15, 2013

Six-foot five-inch Lisa Leslie was the first woman in the WNBA to dunk a basketball in a game and the first WNBA player to score over 3,000 total career points. This week she appeared on “Whose line is it Anyway,” proving she is a “good sport” in more ways than one.

August 14, 2013

Lucy Stone (1818-1893) was the first woman from Massachusetts to earn a college degree. She is also the first recorded American woman to retain her father’s last name after marriage. Women who maintain their birth names are still called “Lucy Stoners.” August 13 was her birth date.

August 13, 2013

There were 305 women who enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on August 13, 1918 but Opah Mae Johnson has the distinction of being the first.

August 12, 2013

Annie Oakley (1860-1926), was the first American female superstar. Born Phoebe Ann Moses, she was a sharpshosorter and starred in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. Her birth date was August 13.

August 11, 2013

First Nuns:  The Ursulines established a convent in New Orelans in 1727, when it was French Territory. The Carmelites established a convent near Port Tobacco, Maryland in 1790, the first in the colonies.

August 10, 2013

Was Lucy Brewer the first woman marine? Some say the story of her three-year stint on the USS Constitution pretending to be a man is fiction based on the true story of Mary Anne Talbot, an Englishwoman who served as a sailor (in disguise) during the Napoleonic Wars.

August 9, 2013

In 1885 Sarah E. Goode (1855-1905) became the first African-American woman to receive a patent, for a bed that folded up into a desk, saving space in cramped quarters.

August 8, 2013

Esther Hobart Morris (1814-1902) was the first female Justice of the Peace in the United States. She served for nine months, appointed after her predecessor resigned in protest over Wyoming’s passage of the women’s suffrage amendment.

August 7, 2013

Sara Teasdale (1884-1993) was the first woman to win a Pulitzer Price for Poetry. Aug. 8 is her birth date.

August 6, 2013

Lucille Ball (1911-1989) became the first woman to run a major television production company in 1962. Desilu Studio produced many television series. Her birth date was August 6.

August 5, 2013

Susie King Taylor (1848-1912) was the first African American to openly teach former slaves in Georgia. She was also a nurse during the Civil War. Aug. 6 is her birth date.

August 4, 2013

Mary Surratt (1823-1865)has the dubious distinction of being the first American woman to be hung by the federal government–for supposedly participating in the plot to assassinate Abraham Lincoln. Her son was acquitted.

August 3, 2013

 The first woman to score in a college football game was Liz Heaston in 1997 when she kicked two extra points for Willamette University.

August 2, 2013

 Anne Dudley Bradstreet (1612-1672) was the first American woman to be published. Her book of poems was published in England in 1650.

August 1, 2013

Maria (pronounced ma-RY-ah) Mitchell (1818-1889) was the first American woman to work as a professional astronomer. The comet she discovered was popularly known as “Miss Mitchell’s Comet.” AND SHE IS ON GOOGLE’S HOME PAGE TODAY!!!

July 31, 2013

Sojourner Truth, an African-American abolitionist and women’s rights activist born Isabella Baumfree, was the first black woman to win a case in court against a white man.

July 30, 2013

 Corinne “Lindy” Boggs, who died on Saturday, holds several first titles: first woman elected to Congress from Louisiana, first woman to preside over a major political party convention, and first woman to serve as ambassador to the Vatican. Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana ordered flags to fly at half-mast.

July 29, 2013

In 2001 Elizabeth Dole , became the first female Secretary of Transportation. July 29 is her birthday.

July 28, 2013

Marine Sgt. Jeannette L. Winters was the first servicewoman to die in the post-9/11 wars. A center for homeless veterans in Gary, Indiana was named in her honor.

July 27, 2013

Mistress Sarah Jenny was the first American woman to run a grain mill. A resident of Plymouth Colony she took over the mill when her husband died in 1644.

July 26, 2013

 On Wednesday, President Obama nominated Caroline Kennedy as US Ambassador to Japan. If approved, she will be the first woman to hold that post.

July 25, 2013

Bella Abzug (1920 – 1998) was the first member of Congress to introduce a federal gay rights bill, known as the Equality Act of 1974, with fellow Democrat Ed Koch, a future mayor of New York City.

July 24, 2013

When Karen Arthur received an Emmy Award for Director in 1985 for “Cagney and Lacey,” she was the first woman to receive that honor.

July 23, 2013

In 1932 Amelia Earhart became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic, a feat that took about 15 hours. Tomorrow would have been her birthday.

July 22, 2013

Helen Thomas (1920-2013), who died on Saturday, was the first woman to be Chief White House Correspondent for UPI. She was also the first woman officer of the National Press Club, the first female member and president of the White House Correspondents’ Association, and the first female member of the Gridiron Club. While in the White House Press Corps,the President traditionally called on her to ask the first question.

July 21, 2013

Janet Reno, appointed in 1993, became the first woman attorney general for the United States. Today is her birthday.

July 20, 2013

Laura Keene, born July 20 in 1826, is known as the first powerful female theatrical manager in New York.  Originally a British actress, she toured and managed theaters throughout the world.

July 19, 2013

Mary Baker Eddy (1821 – 1910), the first woman to found a major religion, Christian Science. She also founded the Christian Science Monitor.

July 18, 2013

Tenley Emma Albright was the first American woman to win an Olympic gold medal in figure skating (in 1952). She is currently the Director of MIT’s Collaboratives Initiative. Today is her birthday.

July 17, 2013

 Dr. Clara A. Swain (1834-1910) was the first accredited woman physician to be sent to the non-Christian world by a missionary society. A member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, she also established the first hospital in India for women and children.

July 16, 2013

 Ida B. Wells (1862 – 1931) founded the first civic organization for African-American women, the Women’s Era Club, later renamed the Ida B. Wells Club.

July 15, 2013

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen was the first Hispanic woman to serve in Congress. Born in Havana, Cuba, she was elected to the House of Representatives by the citizens of Florida. Today is her birthday.

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