Test Your Knowledge: Women’s History Quiz

Continuing our celebration of Women’s History Month, today I thought I’d give readers a chance to test their knowledge of the great contributions and progress women have made through the centuries. These questions were compiled from the National Women’s History Project website and I mostly included questions to which I already knew the answers so I can say, “I can’t believe you didn’t know that!” when you share your results. Just kidding, but, as I teach early American literature, that will explain the disproportionate number of literary and early American history questions.

Quiz questions are after the jump. Check back on Monday for the answers. 

1. Who took over management of Columbia Sportswear Company in the late 1930’s, when it was near bankruptcy, and turned it into the largest American ski apparel company worth $4 billion in 1972?

2. Who is considered the first American woman to be ordained by full denominational authority in 1864, and who also campaigned vigorously for full woman suffrage? 

3. Who was the free-thinking woman who was forced out of the Massachusetts Bay Colony and sought sanctuary in Roger Williams’ Rhode Island in 1637?

4. What woman met Elizabeth Cady Stanton at the International Anti-Slavery Convention in London in 1840 and worked with her for women’s equality for the next half century?

5. What woman has won a total of 56 Grand Slam tennis competitions events and 9 Wimbledon women’s singles titles?

6. Who was the first black prima donna soprano at the Metropolitan Opera, starring from 1961 to 2007, the first black singer to earn the top fee of $2750 for each performance (second only to Birgit Nilsson who got $3000), and winner of 19 Grammy awards?

7. Who introduced America to French cooking in her books and television series from 1963 through the 1990’s?

8. Who was the United States delegate to the United Nations who championed and won approval of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948?

9. Who earned a graduate degree from Oberlin College in 1888, was the first black woman to serve on a Board of Education (in D.C.), sued to integrate restaurants in the 1950’s, integrated the American Association of University Women at age 85, and was a founding member of NAACP?

10. Who became the first female Secretary of State of the United States, appointed by President Clinton in 1997?

11. Who was the first American woman poet whose poetry was published in London in 1650?

12. Who was the first black woman and the youngest poet laureate in American history when she was appointed in 1993?

13. Who wrote “The Feminine Mystique” in 1968 and became a leading figure in the Women’s Movement?

14. Who was imprisoned and then hanged for her Quaker faith in Boston in 1660, and 400 years later her statue was placed in front of the state House?

15. Who was a Rear Admiral in the U.S. Navy credited with developing the COBOL computer language, and with coining the phrase “debugging” to fix a computer?


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