Category Archives: North America

Lois Weber, Hollywood Shero

Lois Weber was early Hollywood’s original shero.  In a career that spanned almost three decades at the beginning of moviemaking, Weber wrote and directed more than 40 features and over 100 shorts.  She was the first woman to direct a feature film in the US –The Merchant of Venice in 1914the first woman admitted to the Motion Picture Directors’ Association in 1916, and in 1917 she became the first woman to run a Hollywood studio.

In her time Weber was considered one of the three “great minds” in early film-making, alongside D.W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille. While her male peers have long been celebrated as the fathers of American cinema, Weber has been largely forgotten. Continue reading Lois Weber, Hollywood Shero

Cathay Williams; female Buffalo Soldier

Continue reading Cathay Williams; female Buffalo Soldier

Jane Addams: Chicago’s Progressive Shero

Jane Addams was born in 1860–the daughter of a wealthy Illinois businessman. At the age of two, her mother died after falling on ice while pregnant. This left Jane empathetic to how fate could work against a person. Continue reading Jane Addams: Chicago’s Progressive Shero

Lucy Maud Montgomery

A precocious red-headed orphan from Prince Edward Island captured the world’s heart in 1908. Anne Shirley, otherwise known as Anne of Green Gables, has withstood the test of time and to this day remains a beloved literary heroine. What about the woman who made her? In many ways, Lucy Maud Montgomery has been overshadowed by her popular creation. Little is known about the story behind the story- the orphan raised by strict grandparents in rural Cavendish, fighting loneliness with the world inside her head. Lucy Maud Montgomery most certainly qualifies as a shero in her own right. Continue reading Lucy Maud Montgomery

Molly Murphy MacGregor

“All of our efforts are with the goal of making women’s lives visible, because invisibility is the number one form of bias.”

 

Interview with Molly Murphy MacGregor, Executive Director National Women’s History Project by Angie Klink. This interview first appeared in Ms Magazine on December 27, 2016.  

Molly Murphy MacGregor was a 26-year-old, California high school history teacher in 1972 when a male student asked her a question that would change the course of her life: “What is the Women’s Movement?” Continue reading Molly Murphy MacGregor

Lucinda Hinsdale Stone

Lucinda Hinsdale was born September 30, 1814 in Hinesburg, VT to Aaron & Lucinda (Mitchell) Hinsdale. Lucinda spent her early years attending the public school, briefly attending a female seminary before finding the academic rigor less than what she desired and at age 13 went to Hinesburg Academy, a boys’ high school. Though she surpassed her male counterparts in the curriculum of Greek, Latin, French, and literature, the gender biases of the time kept her from continuing on to college studies, so at age 15 she became a schoolteacher, which was a common occurrence during that time. Continue reading Lucinda Hinsdale Stone

Frances (Flint) Hamerstrom – Rich Girl to Wildlife Conservationist

When Frances (Flint) Hamerstrom was born in December 1908, her grandmothers fully expected that she would be presented at court. She was from a well to do family where servants and children were not regarded as people. Her childhood was filled with dancing lessons, horseback riding, travels to Europe and a domineering father and unhappy mother Continue reading Frances (Flint) Hamerstrom – Rich Girl to Wildlife Conservationist