Tag Archives: Elizabeth I

Women’s History: May 19

19 May

Happy Birthday, Lorraine Hansberry.  Hansberry was the  first African American woman to produce a play on Broadway, A Raisin in the Sun.  She was also a political activist for civil rights.  Hansberry was a staff writer for the Black newspaper Freedom.  

May 19, 1536, was the day that Henry VIII of England had his second wife, Anne Boleyn, beheaded.  Boleyn was the mother of Elizabeth I.  Henry was successfully married a total of six times. Here are Boleyn’s last words before being executed:

Good Christian people, I am come hither to die, for according to the law, and by the law I am judged to die, and therefore I will speak nothing against it.  I am come hither to accuse no man, nor to speak anything of that, whereof I am accused and condemned to die, but I pray God save the king and send him long to reign over you, for a gentler nor a more merciful prince was there never: and to me he was ever a good, a gentle and sovereign lord.  And if any person will meddle of my cause, I require them to judge the best.  And thus I take my leave of the world and of you all, and I heartily desire you all to pray for me.  O Lord have mercy on me, to God I commend my soul.

May 19, 1994, Jacqueline Kennedy Onasis dies.  Onasis was the widow of John F. Kennedy and the mother of John Jr. and Caroline.

Women’s History, January 25

25 Jan

Virginia Woolf

Happy Birthday, Virginia Woolf.  Woolf was a significant figure in London literary society and a member of the Bloomsbury Group–a well known group of literati, including people like Lytton Strachey, Clive Bell,and Rupert Brooke. While her contributions to the literary world were many, some of my favorites are: A Room of One’s Own, To the Lighthouse, and Mrs. Dalloway. Recently, studies of Virginia Woolf have focused on feminist and lesbian themes in her work.

January 25, 1533, Anne Boleyn marries that madcap Henry VIII–Oy! She lost her head over that one.  Boleyn was wife number two for our Hank after he divorces Catherine of Aragon and starts the Anglican Church.  You have to love a religion being started just to allow a divorce.  Our Anne Boleyn is also the mother of Elizabeth I.

Happy Birthday, Clarina Nichols, the often overlooked social reformer and suffragist. She was also part of the Abolitionist Movement and the Temperance Movement.

Happy Birthday, Maude Wood Park.  Park was a suffragist whose lobbying skills and grasp of legislative politics were successfully deployed on behalf of the suffrage movement and welfare issues involving women and children.

January 25, 1972, Shirley Chisholm announces her candidacy for the US Presidency.

Quote of the day:

    The history of men’s opposition to women’s emancipation is more interesting perhaps than the story of that emancipation itself.        Virginia Woolf



Women’s History, January 13

13 Jan

Elizabeth I of England ascends to the throne of England, with coronation festivities beginning on January 13, 1558.

Happy Birthday, Charlotte Ray.  Ray was the first African American woman lawyer in the United States and first woman admitted to the bar in the District of Columbia.

As a “colored woman lawyer” she was unable to sustain a successful private practice. Her history after graduation is difficult to trace, though a few events are known. She participated in the woman suffrage movement.

Charlotte Ray

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