Today in history: 32 years ago, Sandra Day O’Connor becomes the first woman to be sworn in as Supreme Court Justice.
President Ronald Reagan had nominated O’Connor to the Court one month earlier on August 19, 1981.
Photo: Sandra Day O’Connor being sworn in by Chief Justice Warren Burger. Her husband John O’Connor looks on. 9/25/81. U.S. Supreme Court.
-from the Reagan Library
"…affirming the right of girls to play Little League baseball."
Located in President Gerald R. Ford’s legislation case files is a recommendation to approve the bill H.R. 8864 and amend the Federal charter of Little League Baseball, allowing girls to play.
Did you know JFK had a formal White House visit with a troll? It’s true! Pictured, President Kennedy meets pilot Betty Miller (who completed the first solo flight by a woman across the Pacific Ocean) and “Dammit,” the troll doll who joined her for the trip!
Mrs. Miller received the Federal Aviation Agency’s Decoration for Exceptional Service from the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Agency, Najeeb Halaby (right). (Credit: Abbie Rowe/JFK Library)
"That we have the vote means nothing. That we use it in the right way means everything. Our political work has only begun when we have the ballot. And that work should be carried out exactly as our college work is — as any good work which we undertake is — it must be thoughtful, idealistic, clean, effective."
-Lou Henry Hoover, April 10, 1920
Before she was First Lady, Lou Henry Hoover spoke at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania. At the time of her speech, the 19th Amendment had been passed by Congress. On August 18, 1920, the amendment was ratified, guaranteeing American women the right to vote.
-from the Hoover Library
The American Red Cross was founded on this day — May 21, 1881.
On the founding anniversary of the American Red Cross, here’s Kathleen Kennedy in her A.R.C. uniform from World War II. The photo was taken in London, circa 1943.
Kathleen was the second daughter and fourth child of Joseph and Rose Kennedy.
While in college, Kathleen Kennedy began volunteering for the Red Cross in New York in the summer of 1940. After working for the Times-Herald newspaper, she rejoined the war effort by volunteering again for the Red Cross, this time in London. Read More
-From the JFK Library
Our gratitude goes out to all the volunteers and relief workers of the Red Cross in Oklahoma today, and across the world everyday.
Bill to Break the Sound Barrier
If you were the first woman to break the sound barrier, who would you pick to fly the chase plane behind you?
Jacqueline Cochran tapped her friend, Colonel Chuck Yeager for the task for her May 18, 1953 flight. A logical decision, since he was the first pilot to break the barrier in 1947.
Here is his final bill for his expenses, including the replacement of dead chickens that stampeded when her low-flying Sabre jet flew over a ranch.
-from the Eisenhower Library
“This is the first time since I’ve been in the White House that we have received a woman Chief of State. Add to this the particular alchemy of the Nehru name and the size of the Indian country as an Asian democracy and you have a day alive with drama.”
— Lady Bird Johnson, in A White House Diary, New York: Dell Books, 1971, pg 411. Photo: LBJ Library C1563-6, public domain. This photo was taken on the North Portico of the White House, at the State Dinner for Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on 3/28/1966.
Betty Ford will be honored in the 2013 National Women’s Hall of Fame
From the announcement:
“A groundbreaking First Lady, Betty Ford is often remembered for her candor in addressing the controversial issues of her time. Shortly after she became the First Lady of the United States in 1974, Ford was diagnosed with breast cancer and underwent a radical mastectomy. Rather than suppressing the diagnosis, Ford courageously shared her story and inspired countless women across the nation to get breast cancer examinations. In 1978, following a family intervention, Ford underwent successful treatment for addiction to alcohol and prescription drugs. She again used her story to raise public awareness of addiction, and in 1982, she co-founded the Betty Ford Center to treat victims of alcohol and chemical dependency. Ford was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1991 and the Congressional Gold Medal, with President Gerald R. Ford, in 1999.”
Go Betty! (1918 – 2011)
Photo: Photograph of First Lady Betty Ford Expressing Her Support for the Equal Rights Amendment in Hollywood, Florida, 02/25/1975
It’s Girl Scout Cookie Day, so in honor of this delicious “holiday,” we’re sharing this photo of First Lady Lou Hoover.
Lou was very involved with the Girls Scouts. She was a troop leader and later a board member. Lou received her investiture pin from Girl Scout Founder Juliette Gordon Low in 1917 when she was installed as the Acting Commissioner of the Washington, DC, Girl Scout Council.
In this photo from the Hoover Library, Lou is speaking from the President’s Study in the White House on a special Girl Scouts program. Lois Kuhn (left) and Peggy Starr were also there to talk about what Girls Scouts had done to help the Woman’s Division of the President’s Emergency Committee (March 23, 1931).
For more on Lou Hoover’s adventurous life: http://blogs.archives.gov/prologue/?p=8369
-from the National Archives
The original 19th Amendment will be on display from October 19-24 at the Clinton Presidential Library. If you’re near Little Rock, Arkansas, visit the Library to see the amendment that guarantees all American women the right to vote.
Pictured here, President William Jefferson Clinton, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Chelsea Clinton waving from the back of the campaign train during the Huntington Train Kick-off event for the whistle stop tour. Huntington, West Virginia. 8/25/96
-from the Clinton Library, National Archives ID: 6160456