Delve into women's history—March 5, 2010
March is National Women’s History Month, which was established to draw attention to the vital role that women play in our world. The theme for 2010, its 30th anniversary, is “Writing Women Back Into History.”
According to the National Women’s History Project web site, “To ignore the vital role that women’s dreams and accomplishments play in our own lives would be a great mistake. We draw strength and inspiration from those who came before us – and those remarkable women working among us today. They are part of our story, and a truly balanced and inclusive history recognizes how important women have always been in American society.”
Women as well as men were involved in the struggle to end slavery in the United States. “Only Passing Through: The Story of Sojourner Truth” by Ann Rockwell and “Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom” by Carole Boston Weatherford are simple, picture-book biographies of two former slaves who risked their lives in their struggle to free other slaves. “Sisters Against Slavery” by Stephanie Sammartino McPherson is the biography of two sisters from a wealthy southern family who devoted their lives to the causes of abolition and women’s rights.
Women have made important contributions to our country during wartime. Author Karen Zeinert recounts their efforts in her books “Those Remarkable Women of the American Revolution,” “Those Courageous Women of the Civil War,” “Those Extraordinary Women of World War I,” “Those Incredible Women of World War II,” and “The Valiant Women of the Vietnam War.”
“Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream” by Tanya Lee Stone presents the story of the “Mercury 13” women who strove to be accepted into NASA’s space program in the early 1960s. Although they were never allowed to become astronauts, their efforts paved the way for the women who followed them. This book provides a fascinating look at a little-known part of the history of the U.S. space program.
We also have a number of volumes in the children’s department that are collections of biographies of women. “100 Greatest Women” by Angela Royston provides a one-page biography for each of the one hundred women covered, and each is illustrated with photographs. The book includes well-known figures such as Florence Nightingale, Susan B. Anthony, and Marie Curie, but also many names that are not as well known.
You will also find a number of other biography collections for children, such as “Extraordinary Women Athletes,” “Extraordinary Women Scientists,” “Extraordinary Women in Politics,” “Extraordinary Women of Medicine,” and “Extraordinary Women of the American West.”
Spend some time this month learning more about women who have made a difference in this world. You’ll find these titles and many more in the children’s department of the library.