August 30

Events in Women’s History

Fanny Kaplan, political revolutionary

Fanny Kaplan, political revolutionary (source)

1918 – Fanny Kaplan shoots and seriously injures Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin.  When Kaplan refused to implicate anyone else in her plan, she was executed on September 3, 1918. This is one of the events which led to the decree for Red Terror.


Mary Shelley by Reginald Easton, Wikimedia Commons

Mary Shelley by Reginald Easton (source)

1787 – Mary Thomas, diarist, poet, and early settler of South Australia (d. 1875)

1797Mary Shelley, English author, biographer and travel writer, best-known for her novel Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus, edited and promoted the work of her husband Percy Bysshe Shelley (d. 1851)

1821 – Anita Garibaldi, Brazilian revolutionary, fighter and comrade and wife of Giuseppe Garibaldi; an accomplished horsewoman, she once escaped on horseback from a rival group when her horse was shot out from under her. (d. 1849)

1870 – Princess Alexandra of Greece, Grand Duchess Alexandra Georgievna of Russia as wife of Grand Duke Paul Alexandrovich (d. 1891)

1909 – Virginia Lee Burton, American children’s author and illustrator, known for The Little House which won a Caldecott Award, founder of the textile collective Folly Cove Designers (d. 1968)

1912 – Nancy Wake, New Zealand-born British agent during WWII, member of the Special Operations Executive, leading figure in the French Resistance, one of the Allies most decorated servicewomen of the war, by 1943 the Gestapo’s most wanted person with a 5 million franc price on her head (d. 2011)

1915 – Princess Lilian, Duchess of Halland as wife of Prince Bertil, Duke of Halland (d. 2013)

1919 – Kitty Wells, American singer-songwriter and guitarist, first woman to top the U.S. country charts, inductee to the Country Music Hall of Fame, recipient of the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award (d. 2012)

1922 – Regina Resnik, American mezzo-soprano

1923 – Barbara Ansell, British physician, founder of pediatric rheumatology (d. 2001)


Annabelle Rankin c. 1940 (source)

Annabelle Rankin c. 1940 (source)

1986 – Dame Annabelle Rankin, Australian politician, second woman member of the Senate, first woman from Queensland to sit in the Parliament, first woman appointed as Opposition Whip in the Senate, first woman to hold a cabinet position in Australia and first to head a foreign mission (b. 1908)

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3 thoughts on “August 30

  1. 1966 Constance Baker Motley confirmed as U.S. district judge and became the first Black woman on the federal bench.

  2. 1966 – Constance Baker Motley confirmed as U.S. District Judge and became the first Black woman on the federal bench. Constance Baker Motley was born on September 14, 1921, in New Haven, Connecticut. She later joined the Legal Defense and Educational Fund of the NAACP and worked with Thurgood Marshall. Motley won notable civil rights victories in the U.S. Supreme Court, represented Martin Luther King Jr., served in the New York State Senate and was a city borough president. Perhaps most notably, though, she became the first black woman to be appointed to a federal judgeship in 1966. Motley continued to serve as a federal judge until her death. She died from congestive heart failure on September 28, 2005, at the NYU Downtown Hospital in Manhattan.

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