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Women Who Made History
Abigail Adams (1744-1818)
Women Rights Advocate -- A self-educated woman, Adams held strong political beliefs. She was well- respected and her opinions were influential in government affairs before, during, and after her husband's term as president.
Maya Angelou (1928-2014)
Author/Poet -- Angelou was a novelist, poet, professional stage and screen writer, dancer, editor, lecturer, songwriter, and civil rights activist. In 1993, Angelou recited an original poem at President Clinton's inauguration, confirming her status as "a people's poet."
Susan B. Anthony (1820-1906)
Women's Rights Activist, Suffragist -- Susan B. Anthony began her lifelong campaign for women's suffrage when she met Elizabeth Cady Stanton in 1852. Together they organized the National Woman Suffrage Association in 1869. When committed people work for justice, she said, "Failure is Impossible." The Nineteenth Amendment, passed in 1920, has been called the "Anthony Amendment" in tribute to the tireless work of this great crusader.
Mary McLeod Bethune (1875-1955)
Educator, Presidential Advisor -- In 1904, Bethune opened a school for black girls in Daytona Beach that became Bethune-Cookman College in 1929. From 1936 to 1944, Bethune served as advisor to President Roosevelt on minority affairs. She was vice-president of NAACP from 1940 to 1955.
Amelia Earhart (1897-1937)
Pioneering Aviator -- In 1932, Earhart became the first woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. She also has the distinction of being the first person, male or female, to fly solo non-stop from Hawaii to California, and the first to fly solo round-trip from the U.S. to Mexico.
Helen Keller (1880-1968)
Advocate for Disadvantaged -- Despite being deaf, blind, and unable to speak, Keller became an active writer and international public speaker. Her books and lectures advocating rights for disabled people helped the public recognize the potentials of people with physical limitations.
Dorothea Lange (1895-1965)
Photographer -- Lange photographed bread lines in the depression years, living conditions of migrant workers in California in the 1930s, and documented the treatment of Japanese-Americans in WWII in the crowded internment camps. Her powerful photographic images brought public attention to inhumane conditions.
Margaret Mead (1901-1978)
Anthropologist, Author -- Mead received a Ph.D. from Columbia in 1929 after studying families in Samoa, New Guinea and other cultures, and concluding there is no "natural" assignment of gender roles. She also investigated many western cultures and wrote books about the changing roles of women and men.
Culture and commitment : a study of the generation gap.
Call Number: HM 101 .M38 1970
Eleanor Roosevelt (1884-1962)
Humanitarian -- During her husband's presidential administration, Eleanor Roosevelt used her position as First Lady to promote reforms that helped women, minorities, and the poor. In 1948, as a delegate to the United Nations, she worked brilliantly to win passage of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902)
Women's Rights Activist -- Known as both an eloquent speaker and a forceful writer, Stanton spearheaded the movement for equal rights for women in the United States. She formed the National Woman Suffrage Association in 1869 and served as its president for 21 years.
Gloria Steinem (1934-)
Women's Rights Activist/Writer -- Steinem is a feminist activist, writer, lecturer, and editor. Her activism was inspired by time spent in India, where she witnessed both the oppression of women and the power of non-violent protest. She co-founded Ms. Magazine in 1972, and since then her writing and organizing have made her an iconic but down-to-earth figure in the women’s movement.
Sojourner Truth (1797-1883)
Abolitionist, Suffragist -- Sojourner Truth was freed when New York abolished slavery in 1828. Already a forceful speaker for abolition, she attended a Women's Rights Convention in 1850 and became a strong voice for women’s rights and suffrage with her famous speech in Ohio in 1852, "Ain't I a Woman?"
Harriet Tubman (1820-1913)
Fugitive Slave, Rescuer of Slaves -- Tubman was born into slavery and fled to Philadelphia in 1849 but returned to Maryland the next year. It was then that she began the first of many Underground Railroad trips to lead family and friends to freedom using caution, skill, and subterfuge. During the Civil War, Tubman was a spy and scout for the Union. In 1896, she spoke at the convention of the American National Woman Suffrage Association convention.
Oprah Winfrey (1954-)
Advocate/Business Woman/Entertainer -- Winfrey, a businesswoman who rose to fame with her own top-rated talk show and movie production company, has become one of the most affluent and powerful women in America. Deemed the undisputed "Queen of Talk" since the mid-1980s, she is the first black woman to host a nationally syndicated weekday talk show and was worth over $1 billion by 2003.