From women’s suffrage to the feminist movement, there are many women who shaped American History worth celebrating and remembering this Women’s History Month

In honor of these women who shaped American HistoryHighBeam Research, the premier online research tool, has compiled a topics page on each of them to showcase how their contributions have shaped our world. 

Women Who Shaped American History: Elizabeth Cady Stanton

As a young woman, Stanton joined the causes of temperance and abolition which led to her pursuit for equal rights.  She held a Woman’s Rights Convention in 1848 to address the inequalities faced by women and wrote the opening statement which called for equal rights.  Learn more about Elizabeth Cady Stanton on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 

Women Who Shaped American History: Elizabeth Van Lew

Despite hailing from confederate Virginia, Van Lew maintained loyalty to the Union.  During the civil war, Van Lew assisted inmates at Libby Prison, a confederate prison camp for federal officers, by bringing clothing and food to the prisoners and smuggling letters back to their families.  Learn more about Elizabeth Van Lew on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 

Women Who Shaped American History: Oprah Winfrey

Born in Kosciusko, Mississippi on January 29, 1954, Oprah Winfrey is a former pageant winner who began her career as a local television anchor in Nashville, Tennesse. In the mid-late eighties, Winfrey became the host of The Oprah Winfrey Show which soon became a country-wide phenomenon. Learn more about Oprah on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 

women who shaped american historyWomen Who Shaped American History: Amelia Earhart

One of America’s most famous woman pilots, Earhart became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean.  Earhart coauthored many books and was the aviation editor for Cosmopolitan Magazine before her mysterious disappearance during a flight.  Learn more about Amelia Earhart on HighBeam Research’s special topics page 

Women Who Shaped American History: Betty Friedan

A homemaker in the 1950s, Friedan began writing magazine articles to pursue a job out of the home.  In 1963 she published the book The Feminine Mystique which helped fuel the woman’s rights movements in the 1960s.  Learn more about Betty Friedan on HighBeam Research’s special topics page 

Women Who Shaped American History: Carrie Chapman

An activist for women’s rights and a crusader for world peace, Chapman made strides in the women’s suffrage movement as the president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association and the founder and first president of the International Woman Suffrage Alliance.  Learn more about Carrie Chapman on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 

Women Who Shaped American History: Clara Barton

Barton was the founder of the American Red Cross and was nicknamed the “Angel of the Battlefield.”  Her impromptu relief work in the Civil War made her a national heroine.  Learn more about Clara Barton on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 

Women Who Shaped American History: Fannie Lou Hamer

The granddaughter of a slave and the youngest of twenty children, Hamer was born into a family of sharecroppers but became a leading figure in women’s suffrage.  Learn more about Fannie Lou Hamer on HighBeam Research’s special topics page 

women who shaped american historyWomen Who Shaped American History: Jane Addams

Addams devoted much of her life to helping the poor and was the founder of Hull House in Chicago, one of the first community help centers of its kind in America.  In 1931 she became the first woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize.  Learn more about Jane Addams on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 

Women Who Shaped American History: Mother Jones

Labor leader Mother Jones or the “Miners Angel” became a nationally prominent figure due to her efforts to improve working conditions for coal miners.  She also led the “children’s crusade” to emphasize the need to end child labor.  Learn more about Mother Jones on HighBeam Research’s special topics page. 


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