Though born into slavery Biddy Mason gained freedom for herself and her children in 1856. Only ten years later she had saved enough money to purchase property, making her the first African American women to own land in Los Angeles. A nurse and midwife by profession, she helped found the first elementary school for African American children in Los Angeles,
Elizabeth "Bessie" Coleman was an American civil aviator. She was the first female pilot of African American descent and the first person of African American descent to hold an international pilot license.
Merze Tate - (February 6, 1905 - June 27, 1996) was a professor, scholar and expert on United States diplomacy. She was the first African American graduate of Western Michigan Teachers College, first African American woman to attend the University of Oxford, first African American woman to earn a Ph.D. in government and international relations from Harvard University (then Radcliffe College), as well as one of the first two female members to join the Department of History at Howard…
Three African American women on their way to take their licensing examination by the Texas State Board of Cosmetology ca. 1940. Photo: Franklin Papers, Houston Metropolitan Research Center, Houston Public Library.
Marcenia Lyle Alberga aka Toni Stone, 1954. 1st of 3 women to play in Negro League Baseball with a .243 batting average. Teams: San Francisco Lions 1949, Black Pelicans 1949, New Orleans Creoles 1949-1952, Indianapolis Clowns 1953 (Hank Aaron played for this team in 1952), and the Kansas City Monarchs 1953-1954. She retired at the end of the 1954 season to care for her husband.