May 9

Women peacemakers born today

  • 1879 Helen Clarkson Miller Davis (d. 1968). Internationalist headmistress of Spence School; Middle East expert, esp. constitutions and religious freedom; chaired National Education Committee of League of Nations Association, 1922-41.

  • 1921 Sophie Scholl born Forchtenberg, Bavaria (executed 1943). Leader of White Rose nonviolent resistance to Hitler.

  • 1950 Jorie Graham born Brooklyn, NY. Pulitzer Prize-winning poet. Harvard professor. Portrayed the Iraq War invasion in light of Normandy in anti-war poetry collection Overlord, 2005.

  • 1973 Tegla Loroupe born Kutomwony, Lelan, West Pokot District, Kenya. Kenyan athlete, world marathon champion, won NY Marathon 1994; founded Tegla Laroupe Peace Foundation 2003, bringing peace to warring tribes Turkana and Pokot; founded 10-km Peace Race for 2000 warriors 2006; Oxfam world tour appeal for Darfur 2007.

Women's peacemaking on this day

  • 1837 Mary Parker led the first Anti-Slavery Convention of Women, New York City.

  • 1971 Nguyen Thi Co immolated herself in protest against Vietnam War.

  • 2000 Helen John arrested for blocking US spy base Menwith Hill, Yorkshire. Sent to jail for 17 days.

  • 2007 During a sit-in at Marrakesh University, Sultana Khaya lost an eye after being severely beaten by the police.

  • 2010 On this Mother’s Day, Andrea Cristina Mercado founded We Belong Together: Women for Common Sense Immigration Policies.

  • 2015 Mothers for Justice United held Million Moms March on Capitol Hill to protest police violence against young black men.