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January 16

Compiled and Written by Irene Stuber
who is solely responsible for its content.
This document has been taken from emailed versions
of Women of Achievement. The complete episode
will be published here in the future.

Rosetta Wakeman, Civil War Soldier


QUOTES by Felice N. Schwartz and Margaret Sanger.

Rosetta Wakeman, Civil War Soldier

      Born 01-16-1843, Sara Rosetta Wakeman, aka Lyons/Edwin Wakeman died while with the 153rd NYSV, Co. G&H, as a regular soldier in the Civil War. Her letters, a photo in uniform identifying her, and some personal belongings were found in a trunk in the family attic almost 100 years after her death.
      Her war record was found under the name of Lyons Wakeman. Her last letter was from Brandycore Landing, Louisiana, "Made advance up the river about 40 miles to Pleasant Hill - had a fight. Retreated 10 miles, next day the fight resumed at 8."
      While on guard duty at Cairo Prison in 1863 she had written of a female Union prisoner who had gone into battle as a Major leading her men. The ring she wore, which was inscribed "Rosetta Wakeman, NY Vol. Co. H, 153rd," was sent home after her death in the Marine U.S. Army General Hospital in New Orleans. She had been hospitalized for chronic diarrhea, a major killer of soldiers during the Civil War.
      She is buried in grave #4066, Section 52, of what is now the Chalmette National Cemetery, Chalmette, LA.

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B. 01-16-1901, Laura Riding, American poet and critic who influenced a generation in pre-World War II with her style and composition verve.

B. 01-16-1909, Ethel Merman (Ethel Zimmerman), one of the great American entertainers, whose 29-year Broadway and screen career went from hit to hit, starting with Girl Crazy (1930) and going on to Gypsy (1959) with a stop in 1951 to win the Tony for her work in Call Me Madame. She is probably best known for the show-stopping "There's No Business Like Show Business" from the 1954 show of the same name. EM was awarded the 1972 Tony for her overall distinguished work on behalf of the Broadway theatre. Brassy, exuberant, and energetic, her strong song styling was once described as having "a trumpet in her throat." Won the New York critics award three times.

B. 01-16-1925, Felice N. Schwartz , founding president of Catalyst, a company that worked with businesses to effect changes for women and created Felice N. Schwartz Fund for the Advancement of Women in Business and Profession.
      "...the cost of employing women in management is greater than the cost of employing men...The greater cost of employing women is not a function of inescapable gender differences. Women are different from men, but what increase their cost to the corporation is principally the class of their perceptions, attitude, and behavior with those men, which is to say, with the policies and practices of male-led corporations."
      She authored Breaking with Tradition (1992.)

B. 01-16-1932, Dian Fossey, American zoologist became the world's leading authority on the mountain gorillas of Africa. Founded the Karisoke Research Centre for the study of gorillas. Wrote the noted study, Gorillas in the Mist which was made into a Hollywood movie. She was murdered in 1985 evidentally for her conservation measures on behalf of the gorillas.

B. 01-16-1933, Susan Sontag, American writer, critic, and novelist known for her reflections on modern culture. She draws amazing parallels between Nazi terrorism and the swing to the philosophical right in American culture. In her critical essays, she has disagreed with many of the simplistic outlooks on life by the leaders of many modern American movements including feminism.

B. 01-16-1934, Marilyn Horne, debuted with Metropolitan Opera in 1970. In 1984 Horne was the only living artist on the New York Times' list of nine "all-time, all-star singers in the Met's 100 years." National Medal of Arts from President Bush. MH was noted for her seamless delivery with an exceptional range and flexibility. Like many powerful women in opera, she revived a number of "forgotten" operas.

Event 01-16-1935, Kate 'Ma' Barker, organizer and probably the brains of the notorious Barker-Karpis criminal gang, killed in gun battle with FBI.

Event 01-16-1957, Columbia University announces that a basic law of physics - the conservation of parity - is disproved by Dr. Chien Shiung Wu, a China-born nuclear physicist. A participant in the Manhattan Project and an expert on beta decay and weak interactions, Dr. Wu later worked to find a cure for sickle-cell anemia. She believed that "even the most sophisticated and seemingly remote basic nuclear physics research has implications beneficial to human welfare."
      The law of conservation of parity held that a phenomenon of nature is symmetrical and looks the same whether observed directly or in a mirror with left and right reversed. Dr. Wu devised the experiment for theoretical physicists Tsung-Dao Lee and Chen Ning Yang, who suggested the parity principle would not apply when dealing with weak interactions of subatomic particles.
      On the basis of Dr. Wu's work, Drs. Lee and Yang theory was proved and were awarded the Nobel Prize. Dr. Wu got nothing. Chien-Shiung was the American Association of University Women's 1962, Woman of the Year. In 1964, Wu (born in 1912 and who received her Ph.D. physics degree from Berkeley) would be acclaimed as the first female winner of the National Academy of Sciences' Comstock Prize.

Event: 01-16-1978, The newly created post of "Mission Specialists" was created by NASA and six women appointed to fill the posts. It marked the first time NASA had recognized women. Early in the program, NASA held secret training tests for women and were shocked into stopping the tests when the women scored higher than the male astronauts such as John Glenn in the same tests. The high test results of women was finally admitted to US Congressional probers by NASA in the mid 1970's.
      Finally on February 5, 1995, an American woman astronaut Eileen Collins was co-pilot on a space mission.

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      "...The cost of employing women in management is greater than the cost of employing men...The greater cost of employing women is not a function of inescapable gender differences. Women are different from men, but what increases their cost to the corporation is principally the class of their perceptions, attitude, and behavior with those men, which is to say, with the politicks and practices of male-led corporations."
            -- Felice N. Schwartz

      "I was enough of a feminist to resent the fact that woman and her requirements were not being taken into account in reconstructing this new world about which all were talking. They (the labor movement leaders) were failing to consider the quality of life itself."
            -- Margaret Sanger in her Autobiography.

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