Black History Month : The First Black American Woman to ..


 Vernice G. Armour
Vernice G. Armour
Vernice G. Armour
Vernice G. Armour

”  Vernice G. Armour, 32, is the first Black female pilot in the Marine Corps, and the first Black female combat pilot in United States Department of Defense history”  http://www.blackengineer.com/artman/publish/article_612.shtml

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Ida Bell Wells, also known as Ida B. Well-Barnett (July 16, 1862 – March 25, 1931), was an African-American journalist, civil rights activist, and women’s rights leader in the women’s suffrage movement. She is best known for her courageous and effective opposition to lynchings. An articulate and outspoken proponent of equal rights, she became co-owner and editor of Free Speech and Headlight, an anti-segregationist newspaper based in Memphis, Tennessee. Wells documented hundreds of lynchings and other atrocities against blacks in her pamphlets Southern Horrors: Lynch Law in All Its Phases (1892) and A Red Record (1892). After moving to Chicago for her own safety, she spoke throughout the United States and made two trips to England to bring awareness on the subject.She helped develop numerous African American women’s and reform organizations in Chicago. She married Ferdinand L. Barnett, a lawyer, and they had two boys and two girls. One of her greatest accomplishments (with Jane Addams) was to block the establishment of segregated schools in Chicago. She was a member of the Niagara Movement, and a founding member of the the NAACP. She published her autobiography, Crusade for Justice in 1928 and ran for the state legislature in Illinois the year before she died at the age of 68.

http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Ida_B._Wells_Barnett

Rosa Louise McCauley Parks (February 4, 1913 – October 24, 2005) was an African-American civil rights activist, whom the U.S. Congress called “the first lady of civil rights” and “the mother of the freedom movement”.Her birthday, February 4, and the day she was arrested, December 1, have both become Rosa Parks Day, commemorated in the U.S. states of California and Ohio.On December 1, 1955, in Montgomery, Alabama, Parks refused to obey bus driver James F. Blake’s order that she give up her seat in the colored section to a white passenger, after the white section was filled. Parks was not the first person to resist bus segregation. Others had taken similar steps in the twentieth century, including Irene Morgan in 1946, Sarah Louise Keys in 1955, and the members of the Browder v. Gayle lawsuit (Claudette Colvin, Aurelia Browder, Susie McDonald, and Mary Louise Smith) arrested months before Parks. NAACP organizers believed that Parks was the best candidate for seeing through a court challenge after her arrest for civil disobedience in violating Alabama segregation laws though eventually her case became bogged down in the state courts. Parks’ act of defiance and the Montgomery Bus Boycott became important symbols of the modern Civil Rights Movement. She became an international icon of resistance to racial segregation. She organized and collaborated with civil rights leaders, including Edgar Nixon, president of the local chapter of the NAACP; and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., a new minister in town who gained national prominence in the civil rights movement. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosa_Parks

Sojourner Truth ( c. 1797 – November 26, 1883) was the self-given name, from 1843 onward, of Isabella Baumfree, an African-American abolitionist and women’s rights activist. Truth was born into slavery in Swartekill, Ulster County, New York, but escaped with her infant daughter to freedom in 1826. After going to court to recover her son, she became the first black woman to win such a case against a white man. Her best-known extemporaneous speech on gender inequalities, “Ain’t I a Woman?”, was delivered in 1851 at the Ohio Women’s Rights Convention in Akron, Ohio. During the Civil War, Truth helped recruit black troops for the Union Army; after the war, she tried unsuccessfully to secure land grants from the federal government for former slaves.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sojourner_Truth

Sarah Jane Woodson Early, born Sarah Jane Woodson (November 15, 1825 – August 1907), was an American educator, black nationalist, temperance activist and author. A graduate of Oberlin College, she was hired at Wilberforce College in 1858 as the first African-American woman college instructor.She also taught for many years in community schools. After marrying in 1868 and moving to Tennessee with her minister husband Jordan Winston Early, she was principal of schools in four cities. Early served as national superintendent (1888–1892) of the black division of the Women’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) and gave more than 100 lectures across five states. She wrote a biography of her husband and his rise from slavery that is included among postwar slave narratives.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarah_Jane_Woodson_Early

Marjorie Stewart Joyner (October 24, 2013 – December 27, 1994) was an American businesswoman. She was born in 1896, in Monterey, Virginia. She was the granddaughter of a slave owner and a slave. In 1912, she moved to Chicago and began studying cosmetology. She graduated A.B. Molar Beauty School in Chicago in 1916, the first African American to achieve this. There she met Madam C. J. Walker, an African American beauty entrepreneur, and the owner of a cosmetic empire. Always an advocate of beauty for women, Joyner went to work for her and oversaw 200 of Madame Walker’s beauty schools as the national advisor. Supervised over 200 Walker beauty schools after madame C.J. Walkers death http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marjorie_Joyner

Becoming the first African American graduate of Chicago’s A.B. Molar Beauty School, Joyner opened a salon of her own in 1916. Her first customers were white, but the turning point of her career came when she enrolled in a hair-styling class with Madame C. J. Walker, the grandmother of the African American hair-care industry and reputedly America’s first African  ; Awards: Honorary Doctor of Humanities degree, Bethune-Cookman College, 1961; named one of Five Outstanding Achievers, National Council of Negro Women, 1990; birthday named Dr. Marjorie Stewart Joyner Day in Chicago, 1990; subject of museum exhibitions atSmithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. and at several other major museums.  http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1G2-2872800036.html

Harriet Tubman (born Araminta Harriet Ross; 1820 – March 10, 1913) was an African-American abolitionist, humanitarian, and Union spy during the American Civil War. Born into slavery, Tubman escaped and subsequently made more than thirteen missions to rescue more than 70 slaves[1] using the network of antislavery activists and safe houses known as the Underground Railroad. She later helped John Brown recruit men for his raid on Harpers Ferry, and in the post-war era struggled for women’s suffrage ; When the American Civil War began, Tubman worked for the Union Army, first as a cook and nurse, and then as an armed scout and spy. The first woman to lead an armed expedition in the war, she guided the Combahee River Raid, which liberated more than 700 slaves in South Carolina. After the war, she retired to the family home in Auburn, New York, where she cared for her aging parents. She became active in the women’s suffrage movement in New York until illness overtook her. Near the end of her life, she lived in a home for elderly African Americans that she had helped found years earlier. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harriet_Tubman

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(Martha) Euphemia Lofton Haynes (September 11, 1890, Washington, D.C. – 25 July, 1980, Washington, D.C.) was an American mathematician and educator. She was the first African-American woman to gain a PhD in mathematics, from the Catholic University of America in 1943.

1) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euphemia_Haynes 

2)  http://www.blackpast.org/?q=aah/haynes-martha-euphemia-lofton-1890-1980

” Toni Morrison (born Chloe Ardelia Wofford; February 18, 1931) is an American novelist, editor, and professor. Her novels are known for their epic themes, vivid dialogue, and richly detailed characters. Among her best known novels are The Bluest Eye, Sula, Song of Solomon and Beloved. She also was commissioned to write the libretto for a new opera, Margaret Garner, first performed in 2005. She won the Nobel Prize in 1993 and the Pulitzer Prize in 1988 for Beloved. On 29 May 2012, she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom. ”   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toni_Morrison

Jill Elaine Brown
Jill Elaine Brown

“ Jill Elaine Brown became the first African American woman to serve as a pilot for a major U.S airline when she was hired by Texas international Airlines at the age of 28. Her passion for flying began as a teenager, leading her into the U.S. Navy flight training program where she became its first African American female trainee in 1974”  http://www.blackpast.org/?q=aah/brown-jill-e-1950

” Sarah Breedlove (December 23, 1867 – May 25, 1919), known as Madam C.J.Walker, was an American entrepreneur and philanthropist, regarded as the first female self made millionaire in America. She made her fortune by developing and marketing a successful line of beauty and hair products for black women under the company she founded, Madam C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madame_C._J._Walker

Watch Madam C.J.Walker’s grand daughter give an biography:

Josephine Baker (June 3, 1906 – April 12, 1975) was an American-born French dancer, singer, and actress. Born Freda Josephine McDonald in St. Louis, Missouri, she became a citizen of France in 1937. Fluent in both English and French, Baker became an international musical and political icon. She was given such nicknames as the “Bronze Venus”, the “Black Pearl”, and the “Créole Goddess“. Baker was the first African-American female to star in a major motion picture, Zouzou (1934), to integrate an American concert hall,[3] and to become a world-famous entertainer. She is also noted for her contributions to the Civil Rights Movement in the United States (she was offered the unofficial leadership of the movement by Coretta Scott King in 1968 following Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination, but turned it down),[4] for assisting the French Resistance during World War II,[5] and for receiving the French military honor, the Croix de guerre. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Josephine_Baker

Marian Anderson (February 27, 1897 – April 8, 1993)was an African-American contralto and one of the most celebrated singers of the twentieth century. Music critic Alan Blyth said “Her voice was a rich, vibrant contralto of intrinsic beauty.”[Most of her singing career was spent performing in concert and recital in major music venues and with famous orchestras throughout the United States and Europe between 1925 and 1965. Although offered roles with many important European opera companies, Anderson declined, as she had no training in acting. She preferred to perform in concert and recital only. She did, however, perform opera arias within her concerts and recitals. She made many recordings that reflected her broad performance repertoire of everything from concert literature to lieder to opera to traditional American songs and spirituals.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marian_Anderson

Althea Gibson
Althea Gibson
Althea Gibson
Althea Gibson

Althea Gibson (August 25, 1927 – September 28, 2003) was an American tennis player, and the first African-American athlete of either gender to cross the color line of national and international tennis. In 1956 she became the first person of color to win a Grand Slam title (the French Open). The following year she won Wimbledon and the U.S. Nationals, won both again in 1958, and was voted Female Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press in both years. In all she won 11 Grand Slam tournaments, including six doubles titles, and was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame and the International Women’s Sports Hall of Fame. In the early 1960s she also became the first black player to compete on the women’s golf tour. At a time when racism and prejudice were widespread in sports and in society, she was often compared to Jackie Robinson. “Her road to success was a challenging one,” said Billie Jean King, “but I never saw her back down.”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Althea_Gibson

Mary Edmonia Lewis
Mary Edmonia Lewis

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Mary Edmonia Lewis (ca. July 4, 1844–September 17, 1907) was an African/Native American sculptor (African, Ojibwe and Haitian) who worked for most of her career in Rome. Her heritage is African-American and Native American and was the first African American to  gaine fame and recognition as a sculptor in the international fine arts world.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmonia_Lewis  ; (2) http://www.amazingwomeninhistory.com/edmonia-lewis-african-native-american-sculptor/  ; (3) @andthatrhymeswi via twitter  x  edmonialewis.com

Alysa Stanton,
Alysa Stanton,
Alysa Stanton~ First American Black Woman Rabbi
Alysa Stanton~ First American Black Woman Rabbi

“ Alysa Stanton,   America’s first-ever female African-American rabbi. Stanton, who was born to a Christian family, was formally ordained on June 6, having completed seven years of rabbinical training at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati. Stanton will now assume her new role as the first nonwhite rabbi of Congregation Bayt Shalom, a 60-family synagogue in Greenville, N.C. “  http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1903245,00.html#ixzz2Ktme61aq

Patricia Era Bath
Patricia Era Bath
Patricia Era Bath
Patricia Era Bath

Patricia Era Bath (born November 4, 1942, Harlem, New York) ”  an African American and Native American ophthalmologist, inventor and academic. She has broken ground for women and African Americans in a number of areas. Prior to Bath, no woman had served on the staff of the Jules Stein Eye Institute, headed a post-graduate training program in ophthalmology or been elected to the honorary staff of the UCLA Medical Center (an honor bestowed on her after her retirement). Before Bath, no black person had served as a resident in ophthalmology at New York University and no black woman had ever served on staff as a surgeon at the UCLA Medical Center. Bath is the first African American woman doctor to receive a patent for a medical purpose. Her Laserphaco Probe is used to treat cataracts. The holder of four patents, she is also the founder of the American Institute for the Prevention of Blindness in Washington D.C. ” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patricia_Bath

Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf
Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

She is not from America. But as a black woman, she prove that we as black women can achieve the impossible. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (born 29 October 1938) ” the 24th and current President of Liberia. She served as Minister of Finance under President William Tolbert from 1979 until the 1980 coup d’état, after which she left Liberia and held senior positions at various financial institutions. She was one of the founders and the political leader of National Patriotic Front of Liberia, the warlord Charles Taylor’s party. She placed second in the 1997 presidential election won by Charles Taylor. She won the 2005 presidential election and took office on 16 January 2006, and she was a successful candidate for re-election in 2011. Sirleaf is the first elected female head of state in Africa.”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ellen_Johnson_Sirleaf

Hattie McDaniel (June 10, 1895 – October 26, 1952)
Hattie McDaniel (June 10, 1895 – October 26, 1952)

Hattie McDaniel (June 10, 1895 – October 26, 1952)  was an American actress. McDaniel was the first African-American to win an Academy Award. She won the award for Best Supporting Actress for her role of Mammy in Gone with the Wind (1939). In addition to having acted in many films, McDaniel was a professional singer-songwriter, comedian, stage actress, radio performer, and television star; she was the first black woman to sing on the radio in America http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hattie_McDaniel

Rebecca Davis Lee Crumpler
Rebecca Davis Lee Crumpler

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“Rebecca Lee Crumpler (née Lee) holds a place in American history by becoming the first African-American female to receive an MD degree in the United States. Crumpler received a Doctresses of Medicine degree in 1864 when she graduated from the New England Female Medical College (later to merge with Boston University in 1873). “ http://www.bumc.bu.edu/academies/namesakes/crumpler/

Dorothy Dandridge
Dorothy Dandridge

Dorothy Jean Dandridge (November 9, 1922 – September 8, 1965)” was an American actress and singer, and was the first African-American to be nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress.[3] She performed as a vocalist in venues such as the Cotton Club and the Apollo Theater.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Dandridge

Zelda Wynn Valdes
Zelda Wynn Valdes

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Zelda Wynn Valdes (June 28, 1905 – September 26, 2001) “ before she created the original, legendary Playboy Bunny outfit and stage costumes for the Dance Theater of Harlem, Zelda Barbour Wynn Valdes reinvented us. Her unapologetically sexy, hip-hugging gowns were worn by celebrities and celebrity wives like Dorothy Dandridge, Josephine Baker, Ella Fitzgerald, Joyce Bryant, Maria (Mrs. Nat “King”) Cole, Edna (Mrs. Sugar Ray) Robinson and later superstars like Gladys Knight and opera diva Jessye Norman.  She also designed dresses for legendary figures like Marlene Dietrich and Mae West. In 1948, Ms. Wynn would open her own boutique in Manhattan in what is now Washington Heights on Broadway and West 158th Street. She would later move ‘Chez Zelda’ midtown to 57th street and her sister, Mary Barbour, assisted her and supervised the staff of the store that attracted celebrities and stylish women from all walks of life.”  http://www.ebony.com/photos/style/fashionable-innovator-zelda-wynn-valdes#axzz2KFOteJD9

Janet Collins
Janet Collins
Janet Collins
Janet Collins

Janet Collins (March 7, 1917 – May 28, 2003) ” was one of the few classically trained Black dancers of her generation. In 1951 she won the Donaldson Award for best dancer on Broadway for her work in Cole Porter’s Out of This World. She also performed in Aida, Carmen, and was the first Black ballerina at the Metropolitan Opera. She could not tour in parts of the Deep South due to her race. In later life she taught dance. Janet Collins was among the pioneers of black ballet dancing and paved the way for others to follow. (Arthur Mitchell, for example, joined the New York City Ballet in the year Collins retired.) In 1932, aged 15, she auditioned with success, for the prestigious Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, but as she was required to paint her face and skin white in order to be able to perform she did not join the company. In 1948, she moved to New York and got the chance to dance her own choreography on a shared program at the 92nd Street YMHA”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Janet_Collins

Donyale Luna
Donyale Luna
Donyale Luna
Donyale Luna

” Donyale Luna (August 31, 1945 – May 17, 1979) was an American model and actress. In 1966, Luna became the first African American model to appear on the cover of British Vogue. She also appeared in several underground films by Andy Warhol, and had roles in Qui êtes-vous, Polly Maggoo? (1966), and most notably as Oenothea in Federico Fellini’s Satyricon (1970). ”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donyale_Luna

Phillis Wheatley
Phillis Wheatley
Phillis Wheatley
Phillis Wheatley

“ Phillis Wheatley (May 8, 1753 – December 5, 1784) was the first African-American poet and first African-American woman to publish a book. Born in Senegambia, she was sold into slavery at the age of 7 or 8 and transported to North America. She was purchased by the Wheatley family of Boston, who taught her to read and write, and encouraged her poetry when they saw her talent. The publication of her Poems on Various Subjects, Religious and Moral (1773) brought her fame, both in England, and the Thirteen Colonies; figures such as George Washington praised her work. During Wheatley’s visit to England with her master’s son, the African-American poet Jupiter Hammon praised her work in his own poem. Wheatley was emancipated after the death of her master John Wheatley.”   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phillis_Wheatley

Dorothy E. Brunson
Dorothy E. Brunson
Dorothy E. Brunson
Dorothy E. Brunson

” Dorothy Edwards Brunson (March 13, 1939 – July 31, 2011) was a notable African-American broadcaster.Between 1973 and 1979, Brunson was an executive with Inner City Broadcasting Corporation, which owned five radio stations including WLIB and WBLS in New York City.After leaving Inner City Broadcasting, Brunson was the first African-American female to own a radio station in 1979, WEBB in Baltimore, Maryland. She also later purchased radio stations in Atlanta and Wilmington, North Carolina.Brunson would sell off her radio stations in 1990 to provide funding to establish WGTW-TV in Burlington, New Jersey, a suburb of Philadelphia, becoming the first African-American woman to establish a television station.[2][3][4] She later sold WGTW to Trinity Broadcasting Network.”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Brunson

Shirley Chisholm
Shirley Chisholm
Shirley Chisholm
Shirley Chisholm

Shirley Anita St. Hill Chisholm (November 30, 1924 – January 1, 2005) was an American politician, educator, and author.[3] She was a Congresswoman, representing New York’s 12th Congressional District for seven terms from 1969 to 1983. In 1968, she became the first African-American woman elected to Congress.[4] On January 25, 1972, she became the first major-party black candidate for President of the United States and the first woman to run for the Democratic presidential nomination (Margaret Chase Smith had previously run for the 1964 Republican presidential nomination).[4] She received 152 first-ballot votes at the 1972 Democratic National Convention.”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shirley_Chisholm

Mary Ann Shadd Cary
Mary Ann Shadd Cary
Mary Ann Shadd Cary
Mary Ann Shadd Cary

” Mary Ann Shadd Cary (October 9, 1823 – June 5, 1893) was an American-Canadian anti-slavery activist, journalist, publisher, teacher and lawyer. She was the first black woman publisher in North America and the first woman publisher in Canada. ”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Ann_Shadd

Juanita Goggins
Juanita Goggins
Juanita Goggins
Juanita Goggins

” Juanita W. Goggins (1935– c. 20 February 2010) was the first African-American woman elected to the South Carolina legislature; in 1974 she gained a seat in the state House of Representatives  She was re-elected and served a total of three terms before resigning for unspecified health reasons in 1980. ”  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juanita_Goggins

Bessie Coleman
Bessie Coleman (1892-1926)
Bessie Coleman(1892-1926)
Bessie Coleman(1892-1926)

“The world’s first black female pilot and the first woman to receive an international pilot’s license. She flew in the United States 3 years before Amelia Earhart.” http://sarah-palin-2012.blogspot.com/2010/03/first-black-woman-pilot.html

Della H. Raney
Della H. Raney
Della Raney
Della Raney

” US Army Nurse Corps Captain Della H. Raney, the first African-American nurse of the US Army in WW2  ” http://ww2db.com/image.php?image_id=5603

Stacey D Harris
Stacey D Harris
Stacey D Harris
Stacey D Harris

“Brig. Gen. Stayce D. Harris is the Mobilization Assistant to the Commander, 18th Air Force, Scott Air Force Base, Ill” http://www.af.mil/information

 Dr. Mae C. Jemison,
Dr. Mae C. Jemison,
Dr. Mae C. Jemison
Dr. Mae C. Jemison

“Dr. Mae C. Jemison, First African-American Woman in Spacehttp://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/jemison-mc.html

Mildred Catherine Rebstock
Mildred Catherine Rebstock

” Parke-Davis chemist Mildred Catherine Rebstock (1919-2011) was the first person to synthesize the antibiotic chloromycetin ” http://www.flickr.com/photos/smithsonian/6891599805/in/photostream

Eugene H. Payne and Mildred Catherine Rebstock
Eugene H. Payne and Mildred Catherine Rebstock
Jane Bolin
Jane Bolin
Jane Bolin
Jane Bolin

” Jane Bolin (April 11, 1908 – January 8, 2007) was the first African-American woman to graduate from Yale Law School, the first to join the New York City Bar Association, and the first to join the New York City Law Department. She became the first black woman to serve as a judge in the United States when she was sworn in to the bench of the NewYork City Domestic Relations Court in 1939.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jane_Bolin

{ Note: All photos / Images are from  https://www.Yahoo.com SEARCH ENGINE }

Carrie Bell Robinson Whitted (1910-2010) my great grandmother who lived to see and hear our first black president
Carrie Bell Robinson Whitted (1910-2010) my great grandmother who lived to see and hear our first black presidency

**NOTE**

Even though thesewonderful black women was randomly selected out of thousands who was the ” FIRST” to contribute to America’s growth, I felt the need to remind  EVERYONE  ~ WE as Black women will always have a place  in “HISTORY” ! ~ D. Cox

strong-woman-poster

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