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March 1

Barbie Stamp

Compiled and Written by Irene Stuber
who is solely responsible for its content.


March is Women's History Month

Connecticut's Revolutionary War Heroines

There are More Barbie Dolls than People

Matronalia Feast Changed Juno's Place in Roman Religion

Women Were Active in The U.S. Labor Movement in the South


QUOTES by Dale Spender and Albert Einstein.

March is Women's History Month

Gerda Lerner of the Institute of Women's History lobbied Congress for the recognition of women in history and finally in 1980 the first congressional proclamation was issued. It was expanded to a full month in 1987.
      Every year the President authorized by Congress proclaims March as Women's History Month. Many states and cities also issue proclamations.
      The following is a sample of what you can propose to your city council and the governor of your state. Most politicians are eager to "court the woman's vote" and will welcome the suggestion.

WHEREAS, women have contributed in a fundamental way to the history and heritage of these United States; and

WHEREAS, the celebration of women's accomplishments dates back to the first International Women's day on March 8, 1911, which led to a Congressional resolutions beginning in 1981 proclaiming National Women's History Week, which became National Women's History Month in 1987; and

WHEREAS, the purpose of the celebration is to educate all people in the study of the contributions of women to government, business, industry, science, health, education, social work, and the cultural arts; and

WHEREAS, it is the purpose thereof to preserve, celebrate and teach about the contributions of women to our history and further to promote month-long activities to dramatize and demonstrate the historical role of women; now therefore, be it

RESOLVED, that March is hereby proclaimed as Women's History Month (add the name of city, town, or state.)

"There really is no such thing as 'women's' history. There were men in history and women in history, and events were primarily recorded through men's eyes and their value system."
            -- Gerda Lerner

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Two Connecticut Women Who Changed History

      "Connecticut was not without its Revolutionary Was heroines. Two 'midnight rides' by young women are noteworthy.
      "In 1775, young Deborah Champion of New London was asked by her father to leave her spinning in order to deliver a message to General Washington who was then camped in Boston.
      "At the age of 22, Deborah rode with their family slave as escort north up the Quinebaug Valley to Canterbury, then east to Pomfret and on to Boston. Disguised as an old woman and hiding her face in her calash, she managed to evade the British sentry. 'When I arrived in Boston, I was so very fortunate as to find friends who took me at once to General Washington... [who] was pleased to compliment me most highly as to what he was pleased to call the courage I had displayed and my patriotism,' she wrote.
      "Another young woman helped to save the burning town of Danbury, under British siege. At 16 years of age, Sybil Ludington rode over twenty miles from their New York home near the Connecticut border to round up the militia commanded by her father Colonel Henry Ludington, who was forced to remain at home to prepare the men when they arrived. Sybil's midnight ride enabled Colonel Ludington to cross the New York border and unite with the Connecticut regiments at Danbury. The victory there is said to have directly contributed to the later defeat of the British at Saratoga."

            -- excerpt from Great Women in Connecticut History, published by the Permanent Commission on the Status of Women, March 1, 1986.

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There are More Barbie Dolls Than People

      The first Barbie doll is unveiled at a toy fair in New York City. It was developed by Ruth Handler who cofounded Mattel, Inc., with her husband in 1945.
      Since 1959 more than 800 million dolls in the Barbie family had been sold. Sales in Barbie paraphernalia now exceed $1 billion a year. Barbie has had more than 500 professions in her collector series and can be found in more than 140 countries in various ethnic costumes.
      Barbie is modeled after a Germany comic strip character named Lilli. Mattel bought the rights to Lilli to manufacture Barbie.
      Her unrealistic dimensions led Finnish scientists to declare Barbie anorexic. Barbie has also been banned in some Muslim countries.

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Matronalia Feast Changed Juno's Place in Roman Religion

      March 1 is the tradition date of Matronalia, the feast of Juno who in the ancient Roman religion was chief goddess and the female equal of Jupiter.
      Later times saw Jupiter surpass Juno as mid-eastern religious influences of a monlithic god, i.e., one male supreme god without spouse spread to Rome.
      Juno is actually the embodiment of Europa, the first of the old gods who by tradition was impregnated by the north wind to birth humanity. Europa was the "mother" of the Titans that predated the Olympian Greek gods.
      Juno's day became known as Matronalia (Martronales Feriae) following the rape of the Sabine women. The festival's emphasis attempted to change Juno from the equal of Jupiter into the birthing goddess. The festival was supposed to honor marriage (and make peace with the Sabine women).
      It is not recorded how the raped Sabine women reacted to the festival.

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Women Were Active in U.S. Labor Movement in the South

  • In 1912, a female picket, Anne Lo Pizzo is shot and killed during a textile workers strike to protest the reduction of wages.

  • On September 14, 1929 Ella May Wiggins, widowed mother of five and a labor balladeer, is slain by vigilantes while en route to a meeting for strikers in Gastonia, North Carolina.

  • In 1930, Ann Burlak, a secretary of the National Textile Workers' Union, is arrested in Atlanta for calling a meeting of black and white workers.

  • In 1931, Clara Holden, National Textile Workers' Union organizer is abducted and beaten by vigilantes in Greenville, South Carolina.
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    B. 03-01-1683, Caroline, Queen of England - With the approval of parliament, Caroline who was the wife of George II, often acted as regent in her husband's absence.
          While it is recorded fact that Caroline of Brandenburg-Ansbach had great influence in the politics of her day, HIStorians usually use such language as "she continued to dominate her husband. . ." Such language implies she was overpowering to his "wimpiness" rather than a a knowledgeable woman capable of making wise decisions for her nation.
          The great influences of wives (as well as other women) in the conduct of national afffairs is traditionally ignored by HIStorians or excused because the king was "weak." The same HIStorians do not attribute "weakness" in the same king accepts advice from MALE advisors.
          George II of Great Britain reigned 1727-60. CBA was instrumental in retaining Sir Robert Walpole as prime minster.

    Event 03-01-1864: Rebecca Lee, received the first formal M. D. degree in the U.S. ever given a Afro-American woman. Lee got her degree16 years after Elizabeth Blackwell fought her way into the all-male medical establishment. Blackwell then established       other women's medical institutions. Lee received her degree from the New England Female Medical College in Boston.

    B. 03-01-1872, Bertha Haven Putnam - U.S. historian.

    B. 03-01-1890, Josephine Saxer Irwin - U.S. women's rights activist and city official.
          A native of Cleveland, Ohio, JSI was inducted into the Ohio Women's Hall of Fame in 1983. The National Organization for Women and WomenSpace instituted a Josephine Irwin Award, which is "conferred annually in Cleveland on women who have contributed substantially to the cause of women's rights."

        Ohio Women SuffrageJosephine Saxer Irwin may well have been one of the women pictured in this photograph of a suffrage booth erected in Cleveland, Ohio, to promote a favorable vote for women’s suffrage.

    She was instrumental in organizing Cleveland's huge women's suffrage parade in 1914 and she later became the first Clevelander to join the League of Women voters. JSI was also very active in the campaign for the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s.
          From 1958-62, JSI served as councilman-at-large in the Cleveland suburb of Fairview Park, the first woman elected to the council in that city. (The author of WOAH lived in Fairview Park on Mastic Road while JSI was on the town council.)

    Event 03-01-1909: the University of Minnesota establishes the first university level school of nursing. Bertha Erdmann is named director.

    Event 03-01-1912: Isabella Goodwin becomes the first woman detective with the New York City police department.

    B. 03-01-1915, Peggy van Lier Langley - British war hero. PL was a member of the 'Coment Line' in World War II that is credited with savings the liver of hundreds of Allied aircrews who were downed over occupied Europe. The various 'lines' or organizations were named Comet, Burgundy, Shelbourne, and Pat were operated jointly by civilians and the M19 (British intelligence) to shelter and then pass downed air men along 'the lines' to freedom from the Nazis.
          PL (was Peggy van Lier at that time) was stationed in the south of France where she and others guided the aircrews over the Pryrenees into Spain and eventually repatriation.
          Her line was betrayed in 1942 by an English-speaking German spy and PL was arrested. She was interrogated by the Gestapo and "a fat, evil, rat-faced SS officer," who was convinced of her innocence by her cool denials and let her go. She later said she was so taken aback by her freedom instead of torture that she shook the Nazi's hand - and act she later regreted and could not understand.
          Although she wanted to continue her work, she was ordered back to Britain because M19 feared she had been compromised.
          "One account reported that she reached Gibralter in the bilge of a boat carrying oranges," according to her obitiuary in the U.K. Telegraph newspaper.
          The obituary goes on to say

    Peggy van Lier had operated under the cover of a Swedish Red Cross canteen which provided food and clothes for poor children in Brussels. Her position there had allowed her to team up with Andre de Jongh, Comet's intrepid founder. Shortly after Peggy van Lier's arrival in London, "Dedee" de Jongh (knownto her admirers as "the little cyclone") was herself arrested; she wasfortunate to survive interrogation and then Ravensbruck concentrationcamp.
          Obviously not all war heroes were men, or in uniform!
          "Peggy van Lier Langley was appointed MBE and awarded the Belgian Croix de Guerre with Palm. She also held other Belgian decorations and the Netherlands Resistance Cross," the obituarary dated 07-22-2000 stated.
          PL was born in South Africa. She had five children. Her husband was also a war hero and a M19 figure.

    B. 03-01-1917, Dinah Shore - U.S. singer and actor. DS was a very popular pop singer with a smooth, velvety voice. She was also a film actor and TV personality with one of the medium's first celebrity talk shows.

    B. 03-01-1921, Catharine McClellan - U.S. educator. CM was the long time and revered chair of the department of Anthropology, Barnard College.

    B. 03-01-1927, Lucine Amara - U.S. opera soprano. LA debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in 1950. She was inducted into the Academy of Vocal Arts Hall of Fame in 1989.

    B. 03-01-1933, Myrlie Evers Williams - U.S. civil rights leader. MEW is the NAACP chair emerita.

    B. 03-01-1935, Judith Rossner - U.S. author of a number of best-sellers.

    Event 03-01-1954: Lolita Lebron was one of the four Puerto Rican nationalists who fired shots at Blair House in Washington, DC where President Harry Truman was residing while the White House was being refurbished. The group also fired shots at the House of Representatives. The four were released after a number of years in prison and returned to Puerto Rica. LL continued her activities in the liberationh movement.

    B. 03-01-1954, Janis Gill - U.S. country-western singer tagged Sweetheart of the Rodeo.

    B. 03-01-1954, Catherine Bach - U.S. actor.

    Event 03-01-1966: Venera 3 is the first NASA probe to land on Venus. The planet was found to be very hot and dry instead of wet as was predicted by the heavy "cloud cover." Like many other things, the "female" planet in actuality was much different than the traditional characteristics assumed to be those of female humans.

    B. 03-01-1970, Yolanda Griffith - U.S. athlete and member of the 1999 basketball Olympic gold medalist. YG played professional basketball in Germany until the formation of the American Basketball League. Shen the ABL disbanded she was drafted into the Women's National Basketball Association where she became one or its greatest stars. She stands 6'3" and weighs 175 pounds. An unmarried mother, her daughter Candace attends all her games.

    B. 03-01-1974, Maria Manakova - Yugoslavian Chess grandmaster.

    Event 03-01-1992: U.S. Senator Brock Adams withdrew his re-election campaign after eight women publicly accused him of sexual abuse and harassment in a Seattle Times newspaper article. It marked the first time a high public official was brought down by his "womanizing" which had always been considered the informal "right" of men in power. Adams was accused of many acts of grabbing or attempting to fondle women without their permission.

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          " 'Remember the Ladies,' she writes, 'and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of Husbands. Remember all Men would be tyrants if they could.'
          "These are hardly 'wooing words' and Abigail Adams continues: 'If particular care and attention is not paid to the Ladies we are determined to foment a Rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws which we have no voice, or Representation.'
          "From Adams"s statement it seems that the ladies in 1776 have been talking together, that they are not at all pleased with existing conditions, and that there will be trouble if this new opportunity for formulating new laws (on the principle of 'No taxation without Representation') is not taken.
          "As their spokesperson, Abigail Adams anticipates Mary Wollstonecraft's demand (writing in England in 1792) that what constitutes justice for men also applies to women. The claim for 'individual liberty' formulated by men in relation to themselves, is being generalized to women, by women, using the arguments that men provided."
    [Spender goes on to question how many other women might have been writing similar statements about their freedom.]
          "This is one of the problems of 'information' in the private realm. But there can be no doubt that the concept of 'women"s rights' was in the air. Abigail Adams did not find it necessary to offer (her friend) Mercy Otis Warren any explanation of the 'List of Female Grievances' and she refers to the 'Ladies,' implying that her ideas were not confined to herself, or to her friends.
                -- Dale Spender in Women of Ideas and What Men Have Done to Them, pp. 114-115.

          "The existence and validity of human rights are not written in the stars... Those ideals and convictions which resulted from historical experiences, from the craving for beauty and harmony, have been readily accepted in theory by man - and at all times, have been trampled upon by the same people under the pressure of their animal instincts. A large part of history is therefore replete with the struggle for those human rights, an eternal struggle in which a final victory can never be won. But to tire in that struggle would mean the ruin of society.
          "In talking about rights today, we are referring primarily to the following demands: protection of the individual against arbitrary infringement by other individuals or by the government; the right to work and to adequate earnings from work; freedom of discussion and teaching; adequate participation of the individual in the formation of his government. THESE human rights are nowadays recognized theoretically, although, by abundant use of formalistic maneuvers, they are being violated to a much greater extent than even a generation ago."
                -- Albert Einstein, Address, Chicago Decalogue Society, February 20, 1954

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