March marks the beginning of Women’s History Month. Surprisingly, many women are completely unfamiliar with the fact that there is an entire month dedicated to the history of women and all that our ancestors have accomplished (think, the right to vote, ladies?). Officially, it’s March 8th on which we celebrate International Women’s Day, but the entire month of March – save for the always fun St. Patrick’s Day – is all about women and what we’ve accomplished.
The Beginning of Women’s History Month
Women’s History Day goes back as far as 1911 in the US, but it wasn’t until 1980 in which President Jimmy Carter declared the week of March 8 as Women’s History Week based on the fact that women have been the backbone and strength of this country since the first settlers appeared. Carter recognized that women worked just as hard as men – though in much different settings – to create homes, raise children, raise families and to keep peace between neighbors in an effort to build this country into what it is today. In 1987, Congress passed a bill making Women’s History Week into the entire month of March.
Women’s History Month
It’s during this month that we look back on the women in history who’ve made a difference in our lives. While there are some historical female figures who are sure to come to mind, some that might seem influential and important include women such as Rosa Parks, who not only had a strong influence on women’s history but on black history as well.
Other women who’ve made a serious impact on our country who deserve to be celebrated this month include Victoria Claflin Woodhull. She was the first presidential candidate in 1872. Obviously she did not win, but her stance as a nominee for candidate paved the way for many female firsts. In 1887, Susanna Medora Salter was elected mayor of her Kansas town, going down in history as the first female American mayor.
Edith Wharton was the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for her novel The Age of Innocence in 1921. In 1981, Sandra Day O’Connor was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Reagan.
There are many women in history who have made a difference in the way that the world works, runs and functions. Without women, I’m sure we can all agree, this country would be a much different place. Even though many joke – and some actually believe – that a woman’s place is in the home, rearing children, cleaning and cooking dinner, women are the backbone of this country and of most families. Make it a point to celebrate an amazing woman in your life this month.
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