Welcome to "Obscuritas Femininus Significains" which in paraphrased
Latin simply means some significant facts about women that have been obscured
over time. Or for the trivia buff - some feminine trivia...except that
there is nothing trivial about it. At any rate here, in no particular order,
with no apparent system, is a collection of not-so well-known information
The very first American armed ship named for a woman was Lady
Washington a small wooden river gunboat built in 1776 by New York
State to defend the Hudson River, named in honor of Martha Washington.
In 1858 the first armed U.S. Navy ship named for a woman was the
Harriet Lane a Revenue Cutter, named for niece of President
James Buchanan, who served as Buchanan's White House hostess. It was transferred
to Navy when the Civil War began in 1861; captured by Confederates at Galveston
In 1942 the following U.S. Navy ships were named for women:
Sacagawea (YT-241, harbor tug), name assigned to tug acquired
by Maritime Commission for Navy use.
Pocahontas (harbor tug YT-266).
Elizabeth C. Stanton (AP-69), troop transport named 20 Aug.
Florence Nightingale (AP-70), transport named 20 Aug.
Mary Lyon (AP-71), transport named 20 Aug.
Dix (AP-67), transport, named for Dorothea Dix 20 Aug.
Susan B. Anthony (AP-72), transport named 20 Aug.
Watseka (YT-387), harbor tug named for Pottawatomi woman.
First warship named for woman by USN; first USN ship so named
to take part in combat operations. Higbee -class destroyer. Named
for Lenah S. Higbee, Superintendent of Navy Nurse Corps 1911-1922. Ship
served in Fast Carrier Force.
The guided missile destroyer Hopper, DDG 70, commissioned on
Saturday, January the 6th at Bath Ironworks in Bath, Maine. Named after
Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper who was one of the pioneering spirits
in the field of computer technology, and led the Navy into the computer
age. She first retired in 1967, then called back to active duty and retired
a second time in 1986. She died in 1992. This is only the first time since
World War II and the second time in the Navy's history that a warship has
been named for a woman from the Navy's own ranks.
On 3 March 1945 a young flight nurse, Ensign Jane Kendeigh, made history
on Iwo Jima. She was aboard the first plane to land for aerial evacuation
on the recently secured airfield, becoming the first flight nurse in history
to set foot upon a battlefield. Before landing, the R-4D transport plane
that she was travelling in was forced to circle the airfield for 90 minutes
while an offshore bombardment was in progress. Described in a press release
as "108 pounds of green eyed charm and efficiency", ENS Kendeigh
was also the first flight nurse to land on Okinawa. ENS Kendeigh was part
of the first class of nurses that finished flight indoctrination 22 Jan
1945 at Alameda Naval Air Station, CA.