Saturday, July 9, 2011

Famous Women in American Lifetime

America has been one of the front-runners in the aspect of development over the last few centuries, but this development came at a price for some people, especially the women. In a world full of male chauvinists, it was difficult for women to come forward and achieve something which would make them stand out in the crowd. But some women did dare to do 'it', and today people from all-over the world idolize them.


Clara Barton
Clara Barton was an American humanitarian and a nurse, accredited with the formation of American Red Cross. She was born on December 25, 1821 in Massachusetts, United States. She developed an interest in medicine at the very young age of 11 while she was nursing her ailing brother. She played an important role during the American Civil War by helping hundreds of wounded soldiers.Clara Barton was an American humanitarian and a nurse, accredited with the formation of American Red Cross. She was born on December 25, 1821 in Massachusetts,  United States. She developed an interest in medicine at the very young  age of 11 while she was nursing her ailing brother. She played an  important role during the American Civil War  by helping hundreds of wounded soldiers. In 1862, she started an agency to provide the wounded soldiers with basic supplies. In 1870, while in Europe, Clara came across the International Committee of Red Cross; a neutral agency formed in 1864 to provide humanitarian services to war victims. In 1873, after returning back to the United States, she started working on a project to form the American Red Cross; an organization affiliated to the ICRC. Finally she was successful in convincing the US government the need of having this organization, which would help in war as well as natural disasters. Finally, American Red Cross was formed on May 21, 1881 in Dansville, New York. Barton dedicated the rest of her life to extensive social work such as providing disaster relief after the Sea Islands Hurricane in 1893 and initiating help to the Ottoman Empire after the Hamidian Massacres in 1896. She traveled extensively expanding the base of the American Red Cross throughout the world and opened its first headquarters in Beijing, China. She died on April 12, 1912 in Maryland, United States at the age of 90.

Eleanor Roosevelt
Eleanor Roosevelt was a prominent author, speaker and politician born in New York on October 11, 1884. Co-founder of Freedom House, she was a firm advocate of Civil Rights, and an ardent supporter of the formation of the United Nations. Initially being tutored privately at home, Eleanor joined the Allenswood Academy in London at the age of 15. She married Franklin Roosevelt on March 17, 1905 at the age of 20. Eleanor Roosevelt was a prominent author, speaker and politician born in  New York on October 11, 1884. Co-founder of Freedom House, she was a  firm advocate of Civil Rights, and an ardent supporter of the formation  of the United Nations.  Initially being tutored privately at home, Eleanor joined the  Allenswood Academy in London at the age of 15. She married Franklin  Roosevelt on March 17, 1905 at the age of 20.The couple gave birth to 6 children of which one died in infancy. In 1921, when Franklin suffered a paralytic attack, Eleanor proved to be a suitable substitute for the Democrats in New York. Her active participation in the campaign ensured that Franklin Roosevelt became the 44th Governor of New York and eventually the 32nd President of the United States. Being the wife of the President she served as the First Lady of the United States from 1933 to 1945. During her tenure in the White House, she supported many initiatives such as the Morgenthau Plan; to occupy Germany in the post-war period. Even after the death of her husband in 1945, Eleanor was very active in the United States political scene. In 1946, she was appointed delegate to United Nations General Assembly by the President Harry Thurman. She played an important role in drafting the United Nation's Universal Declaration of Human Rights. She received 48 honorary degrees in her life. Eleanor Roosevelt died on November 7, 1962 at the age of 78, in Manhattan.

Grace Hopper
Grace Hopper, often called Amazing Grace, was an American Computer scientist and a Naval officer. She was born on December 9, 1906 in New York. She is accredited with the development of first compiler for a computer programming language. Grace Hopper, often called Amazing Grace, was an American Computer  scientist and a Naval officer. She was born on December 9, 1906 in New York.  She is accredited with the development of first compiler for a computer  programming language.Grace attended Hartridge School in New Jersey before joining the Vassar College, where she completed her Bachelors in Mathematics and Physics in 1928. She completed her post graduation in 1930 and her PhD in Mathematics from Yale University in 1934 before joining Vassar College as a teacher. During her tenure at Vassar College, she got a call to join the United States Navy Reserve. After graduating in 1944, she was assigned to the Bureau of Ships Computation Project at Harvard University as a Lieutenant, junior grade. In 1949, she joined Eckert - Mauchly Computer Corporation as a senior mathematician and was a part of the team which developed UNIVAC I. Grace took retirement from Navy Reserve twice; in 1966 and 1972, but was recalled on both occasions. In 1973, she was promoted to the designation of Captain and in 1983, to the designation of Commodore by special Presidential appointment. She was awarded the Defense Distinguished Service Medal on her retirement in 1986. After her service in navy, she joined Digital Equipment Corporation as a senior consultant. She passed away on January 1, 1992.

Helen Keller
Helen Keller was an American author and a social activist Helen Keller was an American author and a social activistborn on June 27, 1880 in Tuscumbia, Alabama. Tragedy struck the Keller family when a mysterious disease left Helen deaf and blind when she was just 19 months old. Keller found a companion in Anne Sullivan, who thought her to communicate by spelling words on the hand. She also learnt the Braille script and began to read languages such as French, German and Latin other then English. In 1900, she joined Radcliffe College and completed her graduation in 1902, thus becoming the first deaf and blind person to get a Bachelor of Arts degree. In 1915, she started the Helen Keller International Organization. She played an important role in starting the American Civil Liberties Union in 1920. A member of the Socialist Party, she supported the Socialist candidate; Eugene Debs for his Presidential campaign. Helen had friends from all walks of life. Mark Twain, Charlie Chaplin, Alexander Graham Bell were a few of them. Helen wrote her autobiography; The Story of My Life, at the age of 22. She has authored 12 books in her lifetime. She was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on September 14, 1964 and inducted in the National Womens' Hall of Fame in 1965. She died in her sleep on June 1, 1968.

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