April 10

Events in Women’s History

1959 – Michiko Shōda marries Akihito, the future Emperor of Japan. She is the first commoner to marry into the Imperial Family.

Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko on their wedding day with Emperor Shōwa and Empress Kōjun (source)

Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko on their wedding day with Emperor Shōwa and Empress Kōjun (source)


Hortense de Beauharnais by François Gérard (source)

Hortense de Beauharnais by François Gérard (source)

1783 – Hortense de Beauharnais, Queen consort of Holland as wife of Louis I, mother of Louis II of Holland and Napoleon III of France (d. 1837)

1806 – Juliette Drouet, French actress, mistress, secretary and traveling companion of Victor Hugo (d. 1883)

1881Frances Perkins, American politician and activist, first woman to hold the office of US Secretary of Labor (d. 1965)

1903 – Clare Boothe Luce, American author, politician and diplomat, United States Ambassador to Italy and Brazil, member of the United States House of Representatives for the state of Connecticut, recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom (d. 1987)

1910 – Margaret Clapp, American author, scholar and educator, president of Wellesley College, recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for Biography in 1948 (d. 1974)

1925 – Linda Goodman, born Mary Alice Kemery, American astrologer, author and poet, author of the first astrology book to make The New York Times best seller list (d. 1995)

1930 – Norma Candal, Puerto Rican actress and comedian, known for her role as “Petunia” on the show La Criada Malcriada (d. 2006)

1930 – Dolores Huerta, American labor and civil rights activist, co-founder of the United Farm Workers with César Chávez, recipient of many awards including the Eugene V. Debs Foundation outstanding American Award, Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights and the Presidential Medal of Freedom

1932 – Delphine Seyrig, Lebanese stage and film actress and director (d. 1990)

1933 – Helen McElhone, Scottish politician (d. 2013)

1937 – Bella Akhmadulina, Russian award winning poet, author and translator, known for her apolitical stance in her writing (d. 2010)


Gabrielle d'Estrées, artist unknown (source)

Gabrielle d’Estrées, artist unknown (source)

1599 – Gabrielle d’Estrées, Duchess of Beaufort and Verneuil, Marchioness of Monceaux, mistress of Henry IV of France (b. 1571)

1904 – Isabella II, Queen regnant of Spain from 1843 to 1868, reign disputed by Carlists who didn’t recognize a woman as sovereign; she was deposed in 1868 and formally abdicated in 1870 (b. 1830)

1991 – Wu Yin, Chinese film and stage actress, known for playing roles of older women, chosen as one of the 100 best actors of the 100 years of Chinese cinema, “First Old Lady” of Chinese cinema (b. 1909)

2010 – Maria Kaczynska, First Lady of Poland as wife of President Lech Kaczynski; she and her husband both died while in office in a plane crash. (b. 1942)

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