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Category: Women’s History

Photograph shows portrait of abolitionist Sojourner Truth wearing polka dotted dress and holding cased photograph of her grandson.

Sojourner Truth’s Most Famous Speech

Posted by: Malea Walker

The following is a guest post by Arlene Balkansky. Arlene recently retired from being a librarian in the Newspaper and Current Periodical Reading Room, and was a regular writer for Headlines and Heroes. On May 29, 1851 at the Woman’s Rights Convention in Akron, Ohio, abolitionist and women’s rights activist Sojourner Truth delivered what would …

Women Who Dressed as Men and Made History

Posted by: Heather Thomas

Pharaoh, pirate, soldier, spy. Most have heard of Joan of Arc, but throughout history and across cultures, there have been a great number of women who have dressed in male attire in order to fulfill the roles that had traditionally been reserved for men. Many disguised their identities, sometimes taking their secret to the grave, while others were brazen, and even celebrated by their contemporaries. While their stories have largely been lost to time, there are some that made their mark on history.

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Good News!

Posted by: Amber Paranick

Presenting feel-good news stories to round out our posts for the year and say farewell to 2020 on a positive note! Hopefully, these uplifting, heartfelt, funny, and touching stories from yesterday’s news in Chronicling America* serve as a diversion from the darker news of this year… In 1947, after scouring newspaper stories around the country, …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

Fluffy Ruffles in the Popular Press

Posted by: Amber Paranick

This post is a collaboration with Dr. Christina Burr, Associate Professor in History at the University of Windsor in Windsor, Ontario, Canada, where she teaches courses in North American Popular Culture, Women’s History, and a Graduate Seminar on the Modern Girl. Dr. Burr and I met while she was conducting research on-site at the Library …

A child carrying a bundle of newspapers in one hand, the other arm held high with a copy of the Anchorage Daily Times, the headline reading

“Women Have the Vote!”

Posted by: Amber Paranick

One hundred years ago this week, on November 2, 1920, the United States presidential election was held. It was the first presidential election held after the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment, which granted women the right to vote. Incidentally – and as holders of the Library’s main newspaper collections, we can’t <not> mention it – …

Astronomer Maria Mitchell

Posted by: Heather Thomas

Maria Mitchell (1818-1889) is an astronomer, educator, librarian, activist, and the first nationally recognized woman scientist in the United States. She discovers a new comet, which bears her name, and calculates its orbit, and adds several new nebulae to sky maps. She also teaches at a prominent women’s college and fights to advance the cause of …