Famous Firsts in Business & Technology by American Women
February 20, 2006 at 6:35 PM EST - Updated July 27 at 3:40 AM
Anne Catherine Hoof Green 1st U.S. Woman to Run a Print Shop
Anne Catherine Hoof Green takes over her late husband's printing and newspaper business, becoming the first American woman to run a print shop. The following year she is named the official printer for the colony of Maryland.
Mary Katherine Goddard 1st Female Postmaster
Mary Katherine Goddard became the first woman postmaster in the country (in Baltimore)
Anne Parrish Charity Founder
Anne Parrish establishes, in Philadelphia, the House of Industry, the first charitable organization for women in America.
Mary Kies 1st Woman to receive a patent
Mary Kies becomes the first woman to receive a patent, for a method of weaving straw with silk.
Elizabeth Blackwell 1st U.S. Female M.D.
Elizabeth Blackwell receives her M.D. degree from the Medical Institution of Geneva, N.Y., becoming the first woman in the U.S. with a medical degree.
Rebecca Lee Crumpler 1st Black Female M.D.
Rebecca Lee Crumpler becomes the first black woman to receive an M.D. degree. She graduated from the New England Female Medical College.
Lucy Hobbs 1st U.S. Female Dental Graduate
Lucy Hobbs becomes the first woman to graduate from dental school, the Ohio College of Dental Surgery.
Arabella Mansfield 1st U.S. Female Lawyer
Arabella Mansfield is granted admission to practice law in Iowa, making her the first woman lawyer.
Ada H. Kepley 1st Female Law Graduate
Ada H. Kepley, of Illinois, graduates from the Union College of Law in Chicago. She is the first woman lawyer to graduate from a law school.
Ellen Swallow Richards 1st U.S. Female Chemist
Ellen Swallow Richards, becomes the first female professional chemist in the U.S.
Belva Ann Lockwood Lawyer
Belva Ann Lockwood becomes the first woman admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Lettie Pate Whitehead 1st U.S. Female Company Director
Lettie Pate Whitehead becomes the first American woman to serve as a director of a major corporation, The Coca-Cola Company.
Jacqueline Cochran breaks the sound barrier
Jacqueline Cochran breaks the sound barrier by flying an F-86 over Roger's Dry Lake, California, at the speed of 652.337 miles per hour. Eleven years later, she flies at a speed of 1,429.2 miles per hour, more than twice the speed of sound.
Juanita Kreps 1st Female NYSE Director
Juanita Kreps becomes the first woman director of the New York Stock Exchange. She later becomes the first woman appointed Secretary of Commerce.
Dr. Sally K. Ride 1st U.S. Female in Space
Dr. Sally K. Ride becomes the first American woman to be sent into space.
Mae Jemison 1st African-American Female Astronaut
Mae Jemison becomes the first black female astronaut.