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We Make More Effective Congresspeople (When We Manage to Get Elected)

Regardless of party affiliation, congressional women deliver more federal projects to their home districts and sponsor and co-sponsor more legislation than their male colleagues. In a study that was recently published in The American Journal of Political Science, researchers from Stanford University and the University of Chicago attributed women's political success not to some innate political instinct but to the fact that it's really hard for us to get elected (there are currently 360 men and 75 women in the House; 83 men and 17 women in the Senate). They theorize that women feel immense pressure to measure up, so instead of meeting expectations, we surpass them.


Women Make History and Progress Happen

BY IN Featured, Historical Icons On 02-07-2011

Learning from the past provides hope for the future.

A list of some of the most prominent women in history below:

  • Abigail Smith Adams (1744-1818) – Wife of John Adams, 2nd President of the United States and mother of John Quincy Adams, 6th President. Known for her letters and opinions on society.
  • Jane Addams (1860-1935) – Social Activist, founder of Hull House, charter member of the NAACP, Nobel Peace Prize winner and labor union organizer.
  • Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) – Seamstress, servant, teacher, Civil War nurse, and finally, author and novelist.
  • Marian Anderson (1902-1995) – First African American to sing leading role with Metropolitan Opera, delegate to U.N.
  • Susan Brownell Anthony (1820-1906) – Napoleon of the women’s suffrage movement, mother of the 19th Amendment, abolitionist.
  • Josephine Baker (1906-1975) – African-American international star, civil rights activist, World War II heroine.
  • Ida B. Wells Barnett (1862-1931) – African-American educator, newspaperwoman, anti-lynching campaigner, founder NAACP.
  • Clara Barton (1821-1912) – Civil War nurse, founder of the American Red Cross.
  • Mary McLeod Bethune (1875-1955) African-American educator, founder of Bethune-Cookman College, Daytona Beach, Florida, Presidential advisor, recipient of Spingarn Medal.
  • Sarah Bolton (1841-1916) – Noted Cleveland author of biographies, poetry and a temperance novel.
  • Margaret Bourke-White (1904-1971) – Groundbreaking photo-journalist and author
  • Mary Elizabeth Bowser ( 1839-?) – African-American Union spy in the Confederate White House.
  • Belle Boyd (1844-1900) – Confederate spy during the Civil War.
  • Margaret “Molly” Tobin Brown (1867-1932) – Titanic survivor and a woman who was determined to break the rules of “high society.”
  • Eliza Bryant (1827-1907) – African-American founder of the The Cleveland Home for Aged Colored People.
  • Abbie Burgess (Grant) (1839-1892) – Lighthouse keeper at Matinicus Rock and Whitehead Light Stations in Maine, commissioned by U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Martha Jane “Calamity Jane” Cannary (1852-1903) – A lone woman in the wilds of the Rocky Mountain west
  • Rachel Carson (1907-1964) – Marine biologist, science writer, and environmentalist.
  • Rebecca Carter (1766-1827) – Pioneer woman of Cleveland.
  • Mary Ann Shadd Cary (1823-1893) African-American born pioneer journalist and lecturer.
  • Carrie Chapman Catt (1859-1947) – Suffragette, founder of the League of Women Voters.
  • Cassie L. Chadwick (1857-1907) – Most infamous Cleveland financial con-artist.
  • Bessie Coleman (1893-1926) – First African-American woman to get pilot’s license.
  • Dorothy Dandridge (1923-1965) – Actress, singer and dancer. Star of Carmen Jones and Porgy and Bess.
  • Isadora Duncan (1875-1929) – Mother of modern dance.
  • Amelia Earhart (1897-1937) – Aviatrix.
  • Mary Fields (1832?-1914) – African-American entrepreneur, stagecoach driver, pioneer.
  • Diana Fletcher (circa 1830’s) – Daughter of a former slave father and Kiowa mother, activist, taught in black Cherokee school.
  • Dorothy Fuldheim (1893-1989) – Jewish-American news journalist and television broadcaster; developed format for television news programming.
  • Lucretia Rudolph Garfield (1832-1918) – Wife of James Garfield, 20th President of the United States was First Lady for six months when her husband was assassinated. “Crete” returned home to Lawnfield in Mentor where her life continued in a non-traditional way.
  • Zelma Watson George (1903-1994) – African-American delegate to the U.N., opera singer, speaker and educator.
  • Emma Goldman (1869-1940) – Vilified in her day as the “most dangerous woman in America,” this Russian emigrant earned her title, “Queen of the Anarchists” as labor leader, lecturer, writer, women’s rights activist and free love advocate.
  • Julia Boggs Dent Grant (1826-1902) – Wife of Ulysses S. Grant, 18th President of the United States, was a determined woman who despite family objections married the man she loved. Outspoken, she also created her own plans for ending the Civil War and holding a secret Presidential Inauguration.
  • Charlotte Forten Grimke (1837-1890) – African-American writer, abolitionist and educator.
  • Fannie Lou Hamer (1917-1977) – African-American sharecropper turned civil rights worker and founder of the MS Freedom Democratic Party.
  • Florence Harding (1860-1924) – Wife of Warren Harding, 29th President of the United States, the first presidential wife able to vote for her husband. Scandal plagued this First Lady throughout her life.
  • Caroline Lavinia Scott Harrison (1832-1892) – Wife of Benjamin Harrison, 23rd President of the United States, was the first president-general of the newly formed DAR. An accomplished watercolorist, she designed and painted the Harrison state china and organized the White House china collection.
  • Lucy Ware Webb Hayes (1831-1889) – Wife of Rutherford B. Hayes, 19th President of the United States, was the first presidential wife to have a college degree. She originated the annual Easter Egg Roll on the White House lawn.
  • Sally Hemings (1773-1835) – African American who sacrificed her freedom from slavery for the love of President Thomas Jefferson.
  • Rear Admiral Grace Hopper, USNR (1906-1992) – Computer pioneer and the oldest officer in active duty when she retired in 1986.
  • Hedda Hopper (1890-1966) – In the golden age of Hollywood, Hedda could make or break careers. Gossip was her business and J. Edgar Hoover was her penpal.
  • Adella Prentiss Hughes (1869-1950) – Founder of the Cleveland Orchestra and Cleveland Music Settlement House.
  • Jane Edna Hunter (1882-1971) – African-American social worker, attorney, founder of Phyllis Wheatley Association of Cleveland.
  • Zora Neale Hurston (1903-1960) – African-American writer from The Harlem Group, influenced Toni Morrison and Alice Walker.
  • Anne Hutchinson (1591-1643) – A Puritan woman who defied the male-dominated Massachusetts Bay Colony and after banishment helped settle Rhode Island and New York.
  • Mahalia Jackson (1912-1972) – Extraordinary gospel singer and the first African-American woman to gain national acclaim for gospel music.
  • Rebecca Jackson ( 1795-1871) – African-American eldress of the Shaker sect.
  • Harriet Jacobs (1813-1897) – African-American escaped slave, author and abolitionist.
  • “Mother” Mary Harris Jones (1837-1930) – Irish immigrant who lost her family to yellow fever and became the self-proclaimed mother and “hell-raiser” for the downtrodden American laborer, especially children.
  • Sissieretta Jones (1869-1933) – African-American international vocal prima donna of late 19th century, favorite of George Bernard Shaw and several presidents.
  • Barbara Jordan (1936-1996) – African-American orator and Congresswoman.
  • Elizabeth Keckley (1820-?) Personal maid, best friend and confidant to Mary Todd Lincoln. Wrote tell-all book after leaving Mrs. Lincoln’s employ.
  • Marie LaVeau (1796?-1863?) – African-American Voodoo Queen of New Orleans and famous herbalist.
  • Edmonia Lewis ( 1843-?) – First successful African-American sculptor.
  • Ida Lewis (1842-1913) – Heroic lighthouse keeper of Rhode Island, commissioned by U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Mary Todd Lincoln (1818-1882) – Wife of President Abraham Lincoln, misrepresented by popular history and maligned by her peers.
  • Jenny Lind (1820-1887) – Swedish international opera star, brought to U.S. by P.T. Barnum in the 1850s.
  • Juliette Gordon Low (1860-1927) – Founder of the American Girl Scouts.
  • Clare Boothe Luce (1903-1987) – Playwright, U.S. Congresswoman and ambassador to Italy.
  • Barbara Mabrity (1782-1867) – Lighthouse keeper in Key West, Florida, commissioned by U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Dolley Madison (1768-1849) – First Lady and doyen of Washington society
  • Biddy Mason (1818-1891) – Entrepreneur, one of first African-American women to own land in California.
  • Rachel Agnes Mason (1867-1903) An Irish immigrant whose family came to America in 1788 because of religious conflict.
  • Flora Stone Mather (1852-1910) – Cleveland philanthropist, founder of Flora Stone Mather college at Western Reserve University for women. Sponsored Goodrich House for urban children.
  • Ida Saxton McKinley (1847-1907) – Wife of William McKinley, 25th President of the United States, developed a unique way of coping with her epileptic seizures during her public appearances as First Lady.
  • Maria Mitchell (1818-1889) – Astronomer and professor at Vassar College. First female member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
  • Louise Nevelson (1899-1988) – Russian born New York sculptor famous for her shadow box, wall sculptures and her flamboyant personality.
  • Annie Oakley (1860-1926) – World famous markswoman from Ohio.
  • Georgia O’Keeffe (1887-1986) – Famed American artist who defied convention in both her art and her private life.
  • Louella Parsons (1893-1965) – Hollywood gossip columnist, who dominated Hollywood’s Golden Era. Louella’s relationship with William Randoph Hearst and her own three marriages made her life as stormy as any Hollywood movie.
  • Alice Paul (1885-1977) – The woman who rescued the woman suffrage movement (1910) and made sure women got the vote.
  • Mrs. George (Hannah?) Peake (1755-18??) – First African-American settler of Cleveland.
  • Molly Pitcher (Mary Ludwig Hays McCauley) (1754-1832) – Born Mary Ludwig, this revolutionary heroine followed the Continental Army for more than 3 years, doing what was needed to free the colonies from the tyranny of England.
  • Eleanor Anna Roosevelt (1884-1962) – Wife of President Franklin D. Roosevelt, first activist First Lady
  • Rebecca Rouse (1799-1887) – Cleveland humanitarian, temperance advocate, abolitionist, founder of Beech Brook.
  • Wilma Rudolph (1940-1994) – African-American Olympic Gold Medalist.
  • Rose Bianco Salvatore (1900-1993) – Italian immigrant during the “Great Wave” coming to America.
  • Belle Sherwin (1868-1955) – Cleveland suffragist, President of League of Women Voters, social reformer.
  • Margaret Skapes (1892-1968) – Immigrant from Greece, suffragette.
  • Bessie Smith (1894-1937) – African-American blues singer.
  • Valaida Snow (190?-1956) – African-American band leader and trumpet player.
  • Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815-1902) First president of the National Woman’s Suffrage Association.
  • Belle Starr (1848-1889) – Confederate sympathizer and western frontierswoman and outlaw.
  • Susan McKinney Steward (1848-1918) – First female African-American doctor in New York State.
  • Harriet Beecher Stowe (1811-1896) – Author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
  • Annie Sullivan (1866-1936) – Helen Keller’s teacher.
  • Helen Herron Taft (1861-1943) – Wife of William H. Taft, 27th President of the United States, always longed to live in the White House. Known for planting Washington D.C.’s legendary cherry trees.
  • Susie King Taylor (1848-1912) – First African-American U.S. Army nurse during the Civil War.
  • Mary Church Terrell (1863-1954) – African-American lecturer, suffragette, civil rights leader.
  • Sojourner Truth (Isabella Baumfree) (1797-1883) – African-American abolitionist, Civil War nurse, suffragette.
  • Harriet Tubman (1820?-1913) – Underground Railroad conductor, Army scout, African-American suffragette.
  • Elizabeth Van Lew (1818-1900) – Crazy Bet, an abolitionist in the South during the Civil War, who feigned insanity to help free slaves and help the Union Army.
  • Rosetta Wakeman (1843-1864) – Posed as a male to serve in Union Army during Civil War.
  • Madame C.J. Walker (1867-1919) – African-American entrepreneur, millionaire and philanthropist.
  • Hazel Mountain Walker (1900-1980) – African-American attorney, school principal, actress at Karamu
  • Katherine Walker (1846-1931) – Lighthouse keeper at Robin’s Reef, New York, commissioned by U.S. Coast Guard.
  • Mary Edwards Walker (1832-1919) – Prisoner of war during the Civil War, writer, doctor, fashion trend-setter and the only female to receive the Medal of Honor.
  • Mae West (1892-1980) First to earn a million dollars in the movie business.
  • Phillis Wheatley (175?-1784) – First noted African-American woman poet.
  • Laura Ingalls Wilder (1867-1957) – Famed children’s author and “storyteller of the prairie.”
  • Victoria Woodhull (1838-1927) – First woman to run for President, center of a scandal that rocked the nation.

provided by Women in History a non-profit corporation dedicated to the education of all people through the dramatic re-creation of lives of notable women in U.S. history.

A Bit about Women in History

A dedicated circle of friends headed by Sophia Mastrandreas-Dadas founded Women in History in Lakewood, Ohio in 1991. These women felt a debt to their female ancestors and a responsibility to future generations to tell women’s stories. The knowledge they share is intended to foster an appreciation that all things are possible.

Character research is extensive. It includes published material and, when possible, visits to the locales where the individual lived and worked, plus interviews with family, friends and biographers.

Women in History insists on authenticity in costuming. Authentic vintage clothing is used; pieces in poor condition are used as patterns for reproduction. Hairdos are replicated using the presenter’s natural hair or wigs, styled by a specialist in historic hair design. This individual also styles for the Cleveland Lyric Opera, the Cleveland Opera, and films.

The members of Women in History are all career minded, ranging from homemakers to corporate managers. Each is deeply concerned about family issues and is actively involved in community and non-profit organizations focusing on the betterment of their community. All are committed to taking active roles in shaping the future by contributing to positive change, now.


Women in History is dedicated to the education of all people, regardless of age, race or socio-economic status through the dramatic recreation of the lives of notable women in the history of the United States of America.



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