April 15

Events in Women’s History

 Ella Baker, The Ella Baker Center for Human Rights (source)


Ella Baker, The Ella Baker Center for Human Rights (source)

1960 – Ella Baker leads a conference At Shaw University in Raleigh, North Carolina, that results in the creation of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. Beginning with an $800 grant from the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, the conference was attended by 126 students from 58 sit-in centers and other civil rights organizations.

Births

Future Catherine I c. 1745 by Louis Caravaque (source)

Young Catherine I by Louis Caravaque c. 1745 (source)

1684 – Catherine I, Empress of Russia as the second wife of Peter I; she was crowned as co-ruler with Peter I on May 7, 1724, and ruled in her own right after his death until she died May 17, 1727. (d. 1727)

1829 – Mary Harris Thompson, founder and head physician of the Chicago Hospital for Women and Children, one of the first women to practice medicine in the Chicago area (d. 1895)

1865 – Emily James Smith Putnam, American educator and author, dean of Barnard College (d. 1944)

1892 – Corrie ten Boom, Dutch author and Holocaust survivor, known for her book The Hiding Place which describes her family’s attempts to help Jews escape the Nazi Holocaust. (d. 1983)

1894Bessie Smith, American blues and jazz singer and recording artist, called The Empress of the Blues (d. 1937)

1916 – Helene Hanff, American author and screenwriter, known for her book 84, charing Cross Road (d. 1997)

1928Norma Merrick Sklarek, American architect, first African American female architect licensed in New York and California, first to be elected Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, first to form her own architectural firm (d. 2012)

1933 – Elizabeth Montgomery, American actress; although she had a career that spanned five decades, she is probably best known as Samantha on the television sitcom Bewitched. (d. 1995)

Deaths

Empress Suiko c. 593, artist unknown (source)

Empress Suiko c. 593, artist unknown (source)

628 – Empress Suiko of Japan, first of eight women to reign as Empress regnant according to the official order of succession (b. 554)

1764Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, Marquise de Pompadour, known as Madame de Pompadour, official chief mistress of Louis XV of France (b. 1721)

1962 – Clara Blandick, American actress, best known as “Auntie Em” in The Wizard of Oz (b. 1880)

1969 – Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg, Queen of Spain as wife of Alfonso XIII (b. 1887)

1983 – Corrie ten Boom, Dutch author and holocaust survivor, known for her book The Hiding Place which describes her family’s attempts to help Jews escape the Nazi Holocaust. (b. 1892)

1990 – Greta Garbo, Swedish film actress, ranked fifth on the list of greatest female stars of all time by the American Film Institute (b. 1905)

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