Honoring the History of Women

By: Red Hot Mamas

Published: July 28, 2010

Women’s History Month traces all the way back to March 8, 1857 in New York City. On this day, women from clothing and textile factories protested against poor working conditions and low wages. March 8th later turned into International Women’s Day in 1909 to commemorate the brave women who were part of the New York City rally. Through its popularity around the world, International Women’s Day grew into Women’s History Week in 1979. Today, Congress devotes the entire month of March to celebrate the history of women’s economic, political and social achievements during Women’s History Month.

The overarching theme for March 2010 is Writing Women Back into History. The history of women often seems to be written with invisible ink. Even when recognized in their own times, women are not included in the history books. Just think about all the countless women who planned, lectured, organized, wrote, marched, petitioned, lobbied, paraded and broke new ground in every field imaginable for women’s rights. Glance over this Timeline of the Women’s Rights Movement to see how far we’ve come.

National Women’s History Month is a time to celebrate women’s historic achievements as well as an opportunity to honor women within our families and communities. And boy do we have a lot to celebrate! Take a look at the Census Bureau Facts for Features for Women’s History Month: March 2010:

  • Today, over there are over 155.8 million women in the United States.
  • Of these women, 82.8 million are mothers and 5.3 million are stay-at-home mothers.
  • 29.4 million women (29% of women aged 25 and older) have earned a bachelor’s degree, or more education (higher than the corresponding number for men – 28.4 million). Women have a larger share of high school diplomas, as well as associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees but more men than women have a professional or doctoral degree. 55% of all college students were women in the Fall of 2008.
  • In 2008, women made over $939 billion through 6.5 million women-owned businesses in 2002 (28% of all non-farm businesses). Over 7.1 million people were employed by women-owned businesses in 2002, with nearly one in three operating in health care and social assistance, and other services (i.e., personal services, and repair and maintenance). Women owned 72% of social assistance businesses and just over half of nursing and residential care facilities. Wholesale and trade accounted for 38% of women-owned business revenue.
  • In the 2008 Presidential election, 66% of the voters were female; 73% of female citizens were reported being registered to vote.
  • As of September 30, 2008, 197,900 women were in active duty in the military. Of that total 34,300 women were officers are 163,600 were enlisted, representing 14% of the total members of the armed forces in 2008. Almost two million military veterans were women in 2008.

We have undoubtedly come a long way. This month, think about all of the women who have shaped you into who you are today. From Pocahontas to Greta Garbo and those modern day women heroes and leaders, many of whom were just honored by Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama. Then, think about all the women you could help. What are you contributing? Leading an honorable, compassionate and gracious life will make you an impressive role model and make a difference for our future generations of women.

Women are changing every sphere of life, achieving new heights in sports, politics, business, social activism, volunteerism, and they are finally collaborating with men as equal partners. They’ve paid their dues through hard work . They are transforming the world in which we live, and the results will carry forward in the generation of women to follow.

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