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Gail Skroback Hennessey taught for over 33 years, teaching sixth grade in all but two years. She earned a BA in early secondary education with a concentration in social studies and an MST in social...
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March is Women's History Month


"Remember no one can make you feel inferior without your consent." 
—Eleanor Roosevelt  
In 1978, a school district in  California, organized a “Women’s History Week”. By 1981, Congress passed a resolution establishing a National Women’s History Week and in 1987, Congress created a month, March, to honor the contributions of women and to promote the teaching of women’s history. 
The following information may be helpful  for Women’s History Month. In 2022, the theme for Women’s History Month is “Women Providing Healing, Promoting hope”.
At one time, women weren’t able to do many things because of their gender. Here are some women trailblazers.  Being the first, made it easier for other women to follow in their footsteps. Every year, new firsts continue to be made by women. Here is just a sampling of firsts made by women.
Lucy Brewer
First woman Marine
Elizabeth Blackwell
First woman to receive a medical degree
Amelia Jenks Bloomer
Publisher/editor of first prominent women's rights newspaper
Harriet Tubman
First woman to run underground railroad to help slaves escape
Lucy Hobbs
First woman to graduate from dental school
Arabella Mansfield Babb
First woman admitted to the bar to practice law
Frances Elizabeth Willard
First woman to become a college president (Evanston College)
Victoria Chaflin Woodhull
First woman to be presidential candidate
Helen Magill
First woman to receive a Ph.D. degree (Boston University)
Belva Ann Lockwood
First woman to practice law before U.S. Supreme Court
Clara Barton
Founder of the American Red Cross
Suzanna Madora Salter
First woman mayor (Argonia, Kansas)
Marie Curie
First women to win  a Nobel Prize AND first person awarded TWO Nobel Prizes(as of 2016)
1903 AND 1911
Mary McLeod Bethune
First woman to establish secondary school that became 4-year accredited college
Blanche Scott
First woman to fly an airplane
Jeannette Rankin
First woman U.S. House Representative (Montana)
Bessie Coleman
First African American Female pilot in USA and first AMERICAN to receive an international pilot’s license
Hallie Ferguson
First woman governor of U. S. state (Texas)
Amelia Earhart
First woman to be a passenger on an airplane across the Atlantic Ocean (1928)
and first woman to fly  across the Atlantic Ocean
Jane Addams
First American woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize
Hattie Wyatt Caraway
First woman elected to U.S. Senate
Amelia Earhart
First woman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean
Valentina Vladimirovna Tereshkova
First woman to fly in space, aboard Vostok 6
Mary Clarke
First woman to be named major general in U.S. Army
Sandra Day O'Connor
First woman to become a Justice of the U. S. Supreme Court
Sally Kristen Ride
First American woman to reach outer space.
Ann Bancroft
First woman to walk to North Pole
Christa McAuliffe
First woman citizen passenger on a space mission(teacher)
Lt. Col. Eileen Collins
First American woman to pilot a Space Shuttle
Madeleine K. Albright
First woman Secretary of State and highest ranking woman in the U.S. government
Condoleezza Rice
First African-American woman to be appointed Secretary of State
Nancy Pelosi
First woman to become Speaker of the House
Hillary Clinton 
First FIRST LADY to become a senator(from NY).First woman to be in a presidential primary and caucus in every state. She would go on to be the first female candidate for President for a major political party(Democratic Party)
Michelle Obama 
First African American First Lady
Kathryn Bigelow
First woman to win the Best Director Award
Mary Barra 
First female CEO of General Motors
Allowed to compete in ski jumping events at the Winter Olympics for the first time
Katie Higgins 
First female pilot of the Blue Angels(US Navy Flight demonstration squad)
Megan Brennan
First female United States Postmaster General
Carla Hayden
First woman(and African American woman) to become the 14th Librarian at the Library of Congress
Susan Polgar
First woman in history to achieve the Grandmaster title in chess
Peggy Whitson
Most days spent in space by a NASA astronaut!
Vanessa O'Brien
First woman to successfully summit the 2nd tallest mountain, K2
Gina Haspel
First woman to head the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency)as its director
First  ALL Women spacewalk
On March 29th, Christina Koch and Anne McClain went outside the ISS and participated in the first all female space walk, part of Women's History Month.

Kathy Sullivan

First woman astronaut to do a space walk AND to go into the deepest trench on Earth.(Challenger Deep, Mariana Trench). She is the only PERSON on the planet to have done BOTH


Sunniva Sorby and Hilde Falu Strom

First women to solo at the Arctic over a winter without any male team members. They conducted science experiments on climate change and made observations on wildlife. They had to stay several months longer than planned due to Covid pandemic. They returned a couple of months later for the 2021 winter months.


Kamala Harris

First African/South Asian Woman to become Vice President of the United States!


Did You Know? 

During the Revolutionary War, patriotism had no gender. A number of women worked as spies to help the patriots. Agent 355, her name was never identified, referenced a woman in the Culper Spy Ring. During the American Revolutionary War, the Culper Spy Ring was organized to work to defeat the British. Agent 355 and other members of the spy organization were very important in the colonists being victorious in the War for Independence from England. Agent 355 has been called the “hidden daughter of the American Revolution”.  Other women who worked as spies included  Anna Smith Strong, Lydia Darragh, Emily Geiger and Nancy Morgan Hart, Several women also helped fight and others spread the word of approaching British soldiers during the Revolutionary War. Molly Pitcher carried water to soldiers and helped with a cannon during the Battle of Monmouth. Another woman, Deborah Sampson dressed as a male soldier and joined the army. Margaret Corbin and Ann Bailey were two other women how fought in the war as soldiers. Catherine “Kate” Moore Barry is called the “Heroine of the Battle of Cowpens” for her efforts to help the patriots’ victory which was a turning point in the Revolutionary War.

It is estimated that approximately 400-700 WOMEN fought as soldiers during all the major battles of the Civil War including  the Battle of Gettysburg, the First Battle of Bull Run and the  Battle of Shiloh. Since females were not allowed to fight in battles at that time, those women that did become soldiers disguised themselves as men. To disguise themselves, the women had to cut their hair very short, had to wrap fabric to bind their chests and dressed in men’s clothing. The women also used charcoal to make a “pretend” shadow of a beard. Some women wore false mustaches! The learned to walked in a way to not give away their real identity and also adapted a lower voice or not talk very much at all. Some of the women even took up smoking or chewing and spitting tobacco to not cause suspicion. Several women known to have fought as soldiers during the Civil War included Sarah Rosetta Wakeman, Sarah Emma Edmonds, Amy Clarke and Mary Galloway.

During World War 2, women provided a very valuable service as pilots. It was the first time American women would fly military aircraft. The women Air Force Service Pilots(WASPS) flew new planes from factories to military bases such as the B-26s and B-29s. It wasn’t known whether these “superfortress” bombers were even safe. The women also tested planes that had been repaired and determining if they were safe before a male pilot would fly in it! Probably, the most dangerous job was that of towing targets attached to a plane. Using REAL ammunition, soldiers shot at the targets for combat practice. Several WASP actually got shot in their feet when a stray bullet went through the plane.  Names of women pilots during World War4 2 included Jackie Cochran, Cornelia Fort and Margaret Phelan Taylor.

  1. Are there any areas in which women still have yet to make a contribution?
  2.  What are 3 character traits of women who have been trailblazers? What would you list as 3 of your best character traits?
  3. There is a Hispanic Heritage Month, a Native American Month, a Black History Month and a Women’s History Month. Why do you think such months were established? Do you think there is a need for such months to highlight different groups? Why, why not?
  4. If you could interview a woman trailblazer(past or present), who would it be and why? What might be 2 questions you would ask of that person?
  5. Illustrate one of the women’s history facts.
Note: Photographs from of Elizabeth Blackwell:public domain)
  • Left to right: Harriet Tubman, Amelia Earhart, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Blackwell