By: Katie Bailey
This month people all over the United States are celebrating National Women’s History Month. Ever since the 1970’s women’s history has been a widely unknown topic in schools and in public. It has moved from a single day to a whole week and by the 1980’s, a month-long celebration. In 1986, 14 states had declared March as Women’s History Month to try and get Congress to support the whole month of March being a holiday. A year later Congress declared March as National Women’s History Month forever.
In celebration of this month, we honor women who have contributed to our country:
Barbara Hackman Franklin (1940- ) Franklin was former Secretary of Commerce under President George H.W. Bush. She assisted five other presidents in different roles and led efforts to increase the number of women in government. In 1971, she led the first White House effort to recruit women for high-level government jobs as a staff assistant to President Richard Nixon. This effort resulted in nearly quadrupling the number of women in those positions
Alexis Herman (1947- ) Herman is the first African American to serve as Secretary of Labor and only the fifth woman in the history of this office to be appointed. During her four-year term, she fought to improve conditions for women’s employment and succeeded in getting several corporations that included Coca-Cola and Delta Airlines. They were created to hire women for upper-level positions.
Jane Addams (1860- 1935) Addams was a dedicated peacekeeper and outspoken activist for women’s suffrage. She came up with the idea of houses that offered night classes for adults, a kindergarten, a coffeehouse, a gym, and social groups meant to create a linked community. She also was the first American woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
Molly Pitcher (1754- 1832) Pitcher is recognized for her patriotism in battle. At the battle of Monmouth, she brought water to Continental soldiers in the field and in camps, and helped those who were wounded on the battlefield.
Harriet Tubman (1820- 1930) Tubman was a leader on the Underground Railroad, leading more than 300 slaves to freedom. She also acted as a spy for the United States Army during the Civil War.
Mary McCleod Bethune (1875- 1955) Bethune was an advisor to Franklin D. Roosevelt, she gathered a group of African Americans to advise the president on issues involving black youth, and worked to organize African American leaders in favor of New Deal. She also formed a black school “Daytona Normal and Industrial Institute for Negro Girls.”