Events in Women’s History
421 – Galla Placidia, wife of the Emperor Constantius III, becomes a widow for the second time when he dies suddenly of an illness.
1867 – Masako Ichijō becomes engaged to Mutsuhito, Emperor Meiji of Japan. The wedding was officially celebrated on January 11, 1869. It was delayed due to a period of mourning and political disturbances. As Empress consort she was known as Lady Haruko. Since her death in 1914, she is called by the posthumous name Empress Shōken.
2013 – Diana Nyad at the age of 64 becomes the first person confirmed to swim from Cuba to Key West, Florida without a shark cage or swim fins.
1753 – Marie Joséphine of Savoy, Countess of Provence and Queen of France as wife of Louis XVIII (d. 1810)
1820 – Lucretia Hale, American journalist and author, known for the novels Six of one by Half a Dozen of the Other and The Wolf at the Door (d. 1900)
1821 – Anne Whitney, American sculptor and poet, known for her statue of Samuel Adams in the National Statuary Hall Collection at the U.S. Capitol in Washington D.C. as well as statues at the Smithsonian Institute, Harvard University and Boston Public Library; her model for a statue of Charles Sumner won a competition which she was denied when it was discovered she was a woman. (d. 1915)
1838 – Liliʻuokalani, Queen of Hawaii, the only Queen regnant of the Kingdom of Hawaii and its last reigning monarch (d. 1917)
1849 – Emma Curtis Hopkins, American spiritual leader, author, theologian and feminist, instrumental in the organization of the New Thought movement (d. 1925)
1873 – Lily Poulett-Harris, Australian athlete and educator, founder and captain of the first women’s cricket team in Australia (d. 1897)
1883 – Archduchess Elisabeth Marie of Austria, noted for being a member of the Austrian Social Democratic Party, nicknamed “The Red Archduchess”, recipient of the Dame of the Order of the Starry Cross (d. 1963)
1894 – Bryher, pseudonym of Annie Winifred Ellerman, British author, poet and editor, provided financial support to a number of authors, known for both fiction and non-fiction (d. 1983)
1919 – Marge Champion, American actress, dancer and choreographer, performed as a dancer in MGM musicals during the 1950s often with her husband Gower Champion, recipient of The Douglas Watt Lifetime Achievement Award
1944 – Janet Simpson, British athlete and Olympic medalist, winner of medals in relay races in the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games and the European Championships (d. 2010)
1948 – Christa McAuliffe, American teacher who died in the Challenger space shuttle explosion Jan 28, 1986; she was selected to be the first teacher in space through the NASA Teacher in Space Project. (d. 1986)
1859 – Delia Salter Bacon, American author and lecturer (b. 1811)
1944 – Bella Rosenfeld Chagall, Russian-American author, known for her works The Burning Lights and First Encounter, as well as a model for a number of her husband Marc Chagall’s paintings including Bella with White Collar (b. 1895)
1975 – Mabel Vernon, American suffragist and one of the organizers of the silent protests outside the White House when Woodrow Wilson was in office. (b. 1883)
1992 – Barbara McClintock, American cytogeneticist, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1983 (b. 1902)