March 8

Women peacemakers born today

  • 1863 Henriette “Henni” Forchhammer born Aalborg, Denmark 1863 (d. 1955). Danish linguist and internationalist; WILPF founding member. First woman to address League of Nations, 1920.

  • 1864 Mathilda Wrede born Vaasa, Finland (d. 1928). “Friend of the Prisoners.” Finnish baroness; prison reform advocate. Co-founded pacifist group International Fellowship of Reconciliation, 1919.

  • 1891 Katharine F. Lenroot born Superior, WI (d. 1982). Internationalist; child welfare expert. Head of US Children's Bureau; adviser to League of Nations on white slave traffic; president of 8th Pan-American Children's Conference, 1942. Aided European children in WWII; co-founded UNICEF, 1946; planned International Youth Charter, 1946.

  • 1924 Addie L. Wyatt born Brookhaven, MS (d. 2012). Labor leader; civil rights advocate. Worked with Martin Luther King, Jr.; arrested in Selma, AL. Honored as one of the Women of the Year by Time magazine, 1975.

  • 1944 Renate Winter born Vienna, Austria. International lawyer and judge; expert on juvenile rights. International judge on UN Mission in Kosovo, 2000-02. President of Special Court, Sierra Leone, 2008-10.

  • 1950 Tsvetana Kamenova born Sofia, Bulgaria. Judge for the International War Crimes Tribunal Yugoslavia (ICTY), 2006-09.

Women's peacemaking on this day

International Women's Day

  • 1868 In Geneva, Marie Goegg-Pouchoulin called for international women’s association.

  • 1908 First International Women's Day.

  • 1908 In New York City, women marked the first celebration of International Women's Day with a parade for suffrage.

  • 1910 Clara Zetkin made the socialist declaration, "We choose life…not death."

  • 1913 On the eve of World War I, women held peace rallies throughout Europe.

  • 1915 In Oslo, Alexandra Kollontai organized women’s demonstration against war.

  • 1917 Russian women's strike for "bread and peace" sparked the Russian Revolution.

  • 1918 In Vienna, 3,000 Women demanded peace.

  • 1946 In New York City, women's advocacy group The Congress of American Women (CAW) celebrated International Women’s Day for the first time.

  • 1965 Soviet Union made this day a public holiday to celebrate the merits and accomplishments of women.

  • 1975 United Nations first sponsored the annual event and declared 1975 as the International Women's Year.

  • 1978 Actress Margaretta D’Arcy and 11 members of Women Against Imperialism arrested, Armagh, Ireland.

  • 1979 In Tehran, 15,000 Iranian Women occupied the Palace of Justice.

  • 1981 At NATO’s Ramstein airbase, 3,000 Women staged a "die-in" protest against missiles.

  • 1982 WILPF initiated their S.T.A.R. ("Stop the Arms Race") Campaign to protest weapons stockpiling.

  • 1982 In France, Movement de Liberation des Femmes led a general strike.

  • 1983 In Brussels, WILPF members presented one million signatures generated through the S.T.A.R. Campaign to NATO.

  • 1983 Italian women blockaded the NATO Comiso Air Base in nonviolent protest.

  • 1983 United under the cry of "Women demand peace," the first Congress of the Organization of Angolan Women took place at Luanda.

  • 1984 British women passed out "peace pies" at the Bank of England, London.

  • 1984 Peruvian women demonstrated against all forms of violence.

  • 1984 150 Women picketed at the Presidio, San Francisco.

  • 1985 European women circulated a petition for denuclearization.

  • 1986 Asia Pacific Forum on Women founded.

  • 1987 Cordillera Women’s Education Action Research Center (CWEARC) founded by indigenous Filipina women.

  • 1989 400 Women erected Peace Tent, Tel Aviv.

  • 1995 Belgrade Women in Black assaulted for carrying banner “Albanian Women are our Sisters.”

  • 1995 Russian and Chechen women marched from Moscow to Grozny to protest the Chechen War.

  • 1997 Announcement of Women’s Peace Petition to shift 5% of national military spending towards health, education & jobs.

  • 2000 Theme for International Women's Day: "Women Uniting for Peace."

  • 2001 Theme for International Women's Day: "Women & Peace: Women Managing Conflicts."

  • 2003 25 women from Code Pink arrested at White House in Iraq War protest.

  • 2006 Theme for International Women's Day: “Women in Politics,” celebrating the elections of the first female President of Chile, Michele Bachelet, and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia.

  • 2007 Theme for International Women's Day: "Ending impunity for violence against women and girls."

  • 2008 Theme for International Women's Day: “Investing in Women and Girls."

  • 2009 Theme for International Women's Day: "Women and men united to end violence against women and girls." Around the world, 539 events under this theme take place.

  • 2010 Join Me on the Bridge [to Peace] Campaign. Rwandan and DR Congo women united on border bridge to celebrate peace.

  • 2011 Around the world, 1759 events take place for International Women's Day, including a pro-woman march in Cairo.

  • 2012 World March of Women: "We denounce the advance of militarisation around the world…"

  • 2012 Ukrainian FEMEN activists detained in Sultanahmet Square for topless demonstration protesting violence against women.

  • 2012 On Wall Street, Code Pink protested Bank of America with displays of pink bras and signs bearing the phrase "Bust Up The Banks."

  • 2013 In Moscow, 17 women were arrested for carrying unapproved signs such as “Feminism is Liberation.”

  • 2014 Theme for International Women's Day: “Equality for women is progress for all.”

  • 2014 11 Palestinian women injured by Israeli troops in protest march at Qalandia checkpoint, Jerusalem.

  • 2015 International Women's Day theme "Empowering Women—Empowering Humanity—Picture It!"

  • 2015 In Tunis, female politicians and civil leaders performed Serena Dandini's play about violence against women "Wounded to Death".