November 22

Events in Women’s History

Women on the picket line during the Shirtwaist Strike, 1909, Library of Congress

Women on the picket line during the Shirtwaist Strike, 1909, Library of Congress George Grantham Bain Collection (source)

1795 – Anna Tuthill Symmes, future First Lady of the United States, marries William Henry Harrison. Unfortunately, he died 30 days after taking office and Anna never made it to the White House.

1909 – The “Uprising of the 20,000,” also known as the New York Shirtwaist Strike, began when Clara Lemlich, tired of hearing all the disadvantages of striking from mostly men, took the podium and declared that the shirtwaist workers go on strike. She received a standing ovation and two days later thousands of workers walked out of their jobs.

1990 – British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher withdraws from the Conservative Party leadership election, confirming the end of her premiership.

2005 – Angela Merkel becomes the first female Chancellor of Germany.


Queen Ranavalona III, in Algeria, taken by J. Geiser, 1905

Queen of Madagascar, Ranavalona III, in Algeria, taken by J. Geiser, 1905 (source)

1515Mary of Guise, Queen of Scotland as wife of James V, mother of Mary Queen of Scots (d. 1560)

1602Elisabeth of France, Queen consort of Spain and Portugal as wife of Philip IV (d. 1644)

1744 – Abigail Adams, American wife of John Adams, 2nd First Lady of the United States (d. 1818)

1819 – George Eliot, Mary Ann Evans, British author (d. 1880)

1821 – Abby Morton Diaz, teacher, writer, and women’s rights organizer (d. 1904)

1861Ranavalona III of Madagascar, the last Queen of Madagascar before the take over of the country by the French government in 1895. The Royal family was exiled to Algeria. (d. 1917)

1900 – Helenka Pantaleoni, American actress and humanitarian, co-founded U.S. Fund for UNICEF (d. 1987)

1913 – Cecilia Muñoz-Palma, Filipino jurist (d. 2006)

1919 – Máire Drumm, Irish activist, vice president of Sinn Féin and a commander in Cumann na mBan. (d. 1976)

1920 – Anne Crawford, Israeli-English actress (d. 1956)

1923 – Dika Newlin, American professor, musicologist, composer, pianist and punk rock singer (in her 70s!) (d. 2006)

1924 – Geraldine Page, American actress and Academy Award winner (d. 1987)

1925 – Geraldine “Jerrie” Mock, American aviator and engineer, first woman to fly solo around the world finishing her trip on April 17, 1964

1934 – Rita Sakellariou, Greek singer (d. 1999)

1943 – Billie Jean King, American tennis champion. She won 39 Grand Slam titles.


1825 – Ann Bailey, story teller, and frontier scout during the American Revolutionary War and the Northwest Indian War (b. 1742)

1980 – Norah McGuinness, Irish painter (b. 1901)

1980 – Mae West, American actress (b. 1893)

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Mae West and Cary Grant from "I'm No Angel"

Mae West and Cary Grant from “I’m No Angel” (source)

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