Women’s History Month

A time to celebrate us and those that came before us! M-A-R-C-H back through the past to the 2024 present with this year’s theme to celebrate “Women Who Advocate for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.” Women’s History Month is a month dedicated to honoring women’s contributions in global and U.S. history.


Women have resolved conflicts in their homes, schools, and communities for generations. By rejecting violence, the stress has been to restore respect, establish justice, reduce conflict, and promote the common good. International Women’s Day is celebrated globally on March 8th to put a spotlight on issues such as gender equality, reproductive rights, and violence/abuse against women/girls in countries around the globe. The IWD 2024 campaign theme is Inspire Inclusion. We forge a better world when women themselves are inspired to be included, there’s a sense of belonging, relevance, and empowerment. In 1911 and to the present, countries around the world gathered to celebrate the holiday with educational initiatives, demonstrations and uplifting women in local communities by giving flowers or other gifts.


February 28, 1909 marked the first Women’s History Day in New York City. It commemorated the one-year anniversary of the 15,000 women who marched in the garment workers’ strike to protest their working conditions. Safety standards did not exist and the factory burned down killing many workers. Women’s history wasn’t included in K – 12 school curriculums. Women couldn’t vote and the list goes on. Every year the National Women’s History Alliance, formerly the National Women’s History Project, campaigned to recognize Women’s History Week. They are committed to the goals of education, empowerment, equality, and inclusion.

Finally, in 1980, President Jimmy Carter declared the week of March 8th, Women’s History Week across the country. By 1986, fourteen states declared the entire month of March Women’s History Month. Total success came in 1987 when activists were successful as they lobbied Congress to declare March as Women’s History Month. Since 1995 every president has issued a proclamation declaring March Women’s History Month, usually with a statement about its importance.

A very interesting fact is that it wasn’t until 1965 that all women could legally vote. And women couldn’t get credit cards on their own until 1974. Why was this so? On August 26, 1920, the 19th amendment granted women the right to vote. However, at that time, a number of other laws prohibited Native American Women, Black, Asian, and Latinx American Women from voting. In 1924 Native Women born in the U.S. were granted citizenship, allowing them to vote. In 1965 President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Voting Rights into law and all women could legally vote. Congress passed the Equal Credit Opportunity Act of 1974 so that women could get credit cards in their own name. Today, the U.S. population is 50.8% female according to Census data. Women age 85 and older outnumber men by about 2 to 1 according to data. (4.1 million women to 2.2 million men in the U.S.) Fifty-nine percent of women continue their education after high school, compared to fifty percent of men. The pay gap has narrowed but women earned 84% of what men earn according to research.

During the Pandemic 2021, 57.8% of all women participated in the labor force. About one million women returned to the workforce compared to 666,000 men. In 2022 women now outnumber men in the college-educated labor force. (50.7%)


Why in 2024 is it important to recognize women? Historically women didn’t always get their due. Women past and present are inspirational, have strength, and have a story. Let’s celebrate! The National Women’s History Alliance continues today to lead a consortium of women’s groups and historians in efforts to lobby for recognition of achievements. They state that a positive future can only be achieved by eliminating bias and discrimination “entirely from our lives and institutions.” Every year in March we will highlight the contributions of women to events in history, culture, and contemporary society. Women have made tremendous strides over the decades so let’s celebrate them and how important women have always been in American society! Let’s celebrate our club’s membership and appreciate what every member contributes to our West Deptford community!

Enjoy Women’s History Month!!