Events in Women’s History
1918 – Frances Reed Elliot is accepted into the American Red Cross Nursing Service, becoming the first African American woman in the service.
1937 – Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan are last heard from over the Pacific Ocean while attempting to make the first equatorial round-the-world flight.
1363 – Maria, Queen of Sicily and Duchess of Athens and Neopatria; daughter of Frederick the Simple and Constance of Aragon; she was very young when her father died and the government was taken over by four baronial families; after her marriage to Martin the Younger of Aragon, they returned and took control, ruling jointly from 1392 to her death in 1401. (d. 1401)
1492 – Elizabeth Tudor, English daughter of Henry VII of England and Elizabeth of York (d. 1495)
1849 – Maria Theresa of Austria-Este, Queen consort of Bavaria as wife of Ludwig III, the last Queen of Bavaria (d. 1919)
1865 – Lily Braun, German author and feminist, leader in the German feminist movement (d. 1916)
1869 – Liane de Pougy, French Folies Bergères dancer and courtesan, after her son’s death in WWI, she became a tertiary of the Order of Saint Dominic as Sister Anne-Mary. (d. 1950)
1879 – Genevieve Cline, American lawyer, judge and club woman, first woman named to the federal judiciary, advocate for consumer protection, women’s rights and suffrage (d. 1959)
1896 – Lydia Mei, Estonian painter, known for wartercolors and still-life; one of three sisters who all became artists including Natalie Mei a painter and Kristine Mei a sculptor. (d. 1965)
1902 – Germaine Thyssens-Valentin, Dutch classical pianist, received her training and spent much of her life in France; she made her debut at the age of eight and studied and performed until her marriage in 1924; after a 25 year break from performing, she resumed her career. (d. 1987)
1919 – Jean Craighead George, American author, primarily known for children and young adult literature, recipient of the Newbery Award; she also wrote two guides to cooking with wild foods and an autobiography. (d. 2012)
1923 – Wisława Szymborska, Polish poet, essayist and translator, described as the “Mozart of Poetry”, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1996 (d. 2012)
1929 – Imelda Marcos, Filipino politician and former First Lady of the Philippines as wife of Ferdinand Marcos; exiled after her husband’s removal from power, she was eventually given amnesty by Corazon Aquino and returned to be elected to the House of Representatives; sometimes called the “Steel Butterfly” she is also known for her shoe collection.
1778 – Bathsheba Spooner, American colonist, first woman executed in the American colonies by Americans rather than the British, convicted for the murder of her husband along with the escaped British soldiers she enlisted to help (b. 1746)
1929 – Gladys Brockwell, American actress, known primarily as a character actress; she successfully made the transition to sound films, but her career was cut short by her death in an automobile accident at the age of 35. (b. 1893)
1963 – Alicia Patterson, American publisher, founder and editor of Newsday, member of the Medill publishing family (b. 1906)
1973 – Betty Grable, American actress, immensely popular during the 1940s, known for her million dollar legs (b. 1916)
2004 – Sophia de Mello Breyner Andresen, Portuguese poet and writer (b. 1919)
2007 – Beverly Sills, American operatic soprano and manager, general manager of the New York City Opera, Chair of Lincoln Center and the Metropolitan Opera (b. 1929)
2013 – Fawzia Fuad of Egypt, Queen of Iran as first wife of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi (b. 1921)