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9 History-Making Black Women Who Paved The Way For Us Today

Black Women's History Month

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I just want to say, black women are magic. But ya'll already knew that. So, I'm just going to go ahead and list some amazing black women worth mentioning this Women's History Month. 


1. Ida B. Wells

Biography
Biography

  • Born July 1862
  • An early civil rights leader.
  • A brave journalist that documented lynching in the U.S.
  • Organized the Alpha Suffrage Club among African American women
  • She refused to comply with the segregation of the Suffrage Movement Parade.


2. Madame C.J. Walker

Biography
Biography

  • Born December 23, 1867
  • First African American woman millionaire in America
  • Inventor, saleswoman, business entrepreneur, business executive and philanthropist
  • Walker Hair Care businesses allowed many women in the black community to achieve economic success.


3. Bessie Coleman

Insider
Insider

  • Born January 26, 1892
  • Pioneer in aviation
  • First African American woman with a pilot's license 
  • First African American woman to fly a plane 
  • First African American with an international pilot's license


4. Zora Neale Hurston

Laurence Holder
Laurence Holder

  • Born in 1891
  • American novelist and anthropologist 
  • Best known work: Their Eyes Were Watching God
  • Remembered for authentic portrayal of the American South


5. Lil Hardin

Tumblr
Tumblr

  • Born February 3, 1898
  • First major woman jazz instrumentalist
  • Jazz musician, pianist and composer.
  • Singer, band leader, manager and promoter
  • Clothes designer
  • Restaurant owner
  • Piano teacher and French teacher


6. Ella Fitzgerald

Biography
Biography

  • Born April 15, 1917
  • Throughout the late 1930s, she performed at some of the most famous venues of the swing era.
  • Won 13 Grammy Awards between 1959 and 1995
  • Considered one of the best singers in the history of jazz


7. bell hooks

Lion's Roar
Lion's Roar

  • Born September 25, 1952
  • Author, feminist, and social activist
  • Her writing focused on race, capitalism and gender.
  • She shed some light on the racism in the modern feminist movement in her writings (this made many women question her writing by challenging her writing style and claiming it was unorthodox).


8. Toni Morrison 

Granta
Granta

  • Born February 18, 1931
  • First African American woman to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature (1993)
  • In her novels, she focuses on the experience of black Americans, particularly emphasizing black women's experience in an unjust society and the search for cultural identity.
  • Her novel, "Beloved," was published in in 1987, and won the fiction Pulitzer Prize.


9. Marsha P. Johnson

Netflix
Netflix

  • Born August 24, 1945
  • Leader of the Stonewall riots
  • Founded the "Gay Liberation Front" 
  • Founded a housing program for trans and queer youth called STAR
  • Posed for Andy Warhol paintings and was also a well-known performer 

 

These are just a few of the women worth mentioning this Women's History Month. Black women are at the root of every major movement and moment. Let us never forget that. Our history as black women is out there, we just have to dig a little deeper to find it.

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