February 15

Women peacemakers born today

  • 1820 Susan B. Anthony born Adams, MA (d. 1906). Quaker; abolitionist; pioneering suffragist. Called "The mother of us all," by Gertrude Stein. Founded International Council for Women, 1899, and International Women's Suffrage Alliance, 1904.

  • 1795 Rebecca Cox Jackson born Hornstown, PA (d. 1871). African-American pacifist preacher; Eldress of Philadelphia Shaker community.

  • 1882 Elisabeth Rotten born Berlin, Germany (d. 1964). Quaker pacifist; educational reformer. Swiss-German founding member of WILPF and International Fellowship of Reconciliation. Founded the League of Nations Institute for International Education, Geneva, 1921.

  • 1890 Klara Marie Fassbinder born Trier, Germany (d. 1974). German radical pacifist; author and educator. Fired by Nazis for opposing anti-Jewish policies; fired by postwar government for opposing rearmament. Proponent of German reunification; co-founded West German Women’s Peace Association, 1952.

  • 1910 Irena Sendler born Otwock, Poland (d. 2008). Catholic humanitarian social worker whose efforts helped save 2,500 Jewish children. Arrested in 1943, tortured and sentenced to death, but escaped.

  • 1921 Marjorie Swann Edwin born Cedar Rapids, IA. Quaker peace activist for seven decades. New England director of AFSC; founder of CORE; Coordinator of New England Committee for Nonviolent Action.

  • 1928 Mary Evelyn Jegen born Chicago, IL (d. 2014). History professor; Catholic scholar; Sister of Notre Dame de Namur. Founded Pax Christi USA, 1975; National Director of Pax Christi USA, 1979-82; Vice-president of Pax Christi International, 1984-90.

  • 1935 Susan Brownmiller born Brooklyn, NY. Journalist and author.

  • 1946 Clare Short born Birmingham, England. British Minister of International Development; resigned in protest against Iraq War, 2003.

  • 1949 Fatoumata Dembélé Diarra born Koulikaro, Mali. Judge of Yugoslav War Crimes Tribunal, 2003; President and founder of the Pro Bono Center for women and children in Mali.

Women's peacemaking on this day

  • 1908 For the “Self-Denial Week” fundraiser, suffragists gave up tea, coffee, and cocoa for the cause.

  • 1971 At the Black Sash Convention in Cape Town, Black Sash president Jean Sinclair voiced opposition to Apartheid.

  • 1982 White House fence scaled by members of the National Women's Party; 16 arrested.

  • 1983 Universal Peace Charter adopted by Brahma Kumaris at Mt. Abu, Rajastan, India.

  • 1983 500 Greenham Women protested Newbury court trial.

  • 1996 UN Trust Fund to Eliminate Violence Against Women established (General Assembly resolution 50/166).