December 26

Events in Women’s History

1862 – The USS Red Rover is commissioned by the United States Navy as a hospital ship and takes aboard the first women to serve as nurses aboard a navy ship. They were Sisters of the Order of the Holy Cross.

1898Marie and Pierre Curie announce the isolation of radium.


Julie Clary Bonaparte with her daughters, c. 1808, by François Gérard

Julie Clary Bonaparte with her daughters, c. 1808, by François Gérard (source)

1771 – Marie Julie Clary, Queen consort of Spain and the Indies, Naples and Sicily as the wife of Joseph Bonaparte (d. 1845)

1780Mary Somerville, Scottish polymath and author (d. 1872)

1819 – E. D. E. N. Southworth, American author (d. 1899)

1854 – Eva March Tappan, American author and educator (d. 1930)

1914 – Annemarie Wendl, German actress (d. 2006)

1918 – Olga Lopes-Seale, Guyanese-Barbadian singer, radio host, social and community worker, known as “Aunti Olga”, 2005 Dame of St. Andrew (d. 2011)

1926 – Gina Pellón, Cuban-French painter and poet, known for abstract painting and bold colors (d. 2014)

1929 – Régine Zylberberg, Belgian-French singer and night-club impresaria, known as “Queen of the Night”

1954Susan Butcher, American dog musher, second woman to win the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, second four time winner of the Iditarod, first person to win in 4 of 5 sequential years, influential in changing the treatment and training of dogs (d. 2006)


1818 – Maria Isabel of Portugal, Queen of Spain as wife of Ferdinand VII, daughter of John BI of Portugal and Carlota Joaquina of Spain (b. 1797)

1970 – Lillian Board, British athlete and Olympic medalist (b. 1948)

1981 – Savitri, Indian actress, director, and producer; appeared in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Hindi films; recipient of the Rashtrapati Award (b. 1937)

1981 – Amber Reeves, British feminist author and scholar (b. 1887)

1983 – Violet Carson, British actress (b. 1898)

1985 – Margarete Schön, German actress (b. 1895)

1986 – Elsa Lanchester, British actress (b. 1902)

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Lillian Board at 1968 Mexico Olympics (source)

Lillian Board at 1968 Mexico Olympics (source)

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