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Iowa Department of Education

02/26/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 02/26/2020 02:38

Women’s History Month: A contextual look into the past

From Iowa's Arabella Mansfield, who became the first female lawyer in the country in 1869, to Gertrude Durden Rush, who became the first black woman admitted to the Iowa bar in 1907, there is no shortage of Iowa 'firsts' for women.

Though being first certainly lands you in the history books, the story isn't told without context.

Mansfield went against all odds - and societal values - to earn her achievement. And Durden Rush did as much - and broke racial barriers - when there was scant help from others to do so.

What prompted these women and so many others to take an untrodden path? What were the challenges? What has changed over the last 100-plus years? What hasn't?

Women's History Month is loaded with context - with the proper resources. Check out the resources we have gathered. They will keep you and your classroom busy all (Women's History) Month.