Thank you to Cathleen Burns, who submitted this post about her mother, Mary Joye Burns (nee Geary), pictured above. Cathleen says
she was a Medical Technologist at Emory University in 1950. She always wanted to be a doctor but her stepmother told her “Joye, women can’t be doctors!”, so she became a medical technologist instead. She married my dad, who was able to become a doctor, and they were married 62 years until my father passed away this July.
Book of Beatrix Potter’s drawings in the Armitt Collection.
Thanks to Sam Mason, who has blogged about Beatrix Potter (later Mrs Heelis) here and suggested her for Grandma got STEM. Sam shared that this biography
describes her contributions to mycology (study of fungi), ignored at the time due to her sex and class. The biography also describes how Potter’s books for children introduced them to natural history and made Potter rich enough to buy large properties in the Lake District. Land ownership led to her contributions to the nascent National Parks movement and to the conservation of livestock breeds.
Chet Raymo also blogs about Potter, noting that
In the October 1972 issue of Natural History Magazine, Naomi Gilpatrick said Potter “would have liked to discuss her growing portfolio of fungus and lichen drawings with some of the scientists at the Botanic Gardens. She had questions to ask — small, moot points that weren’t touched upon in any of the books she had consulted. . . Her own observations, made not only in her third-floor study but also on frequent holidays to seacoast towns with her father, a leisure-class photographer, had brought her to the forefront of what was known about lichens and fungi.”
Thanks to the Women Rock Science tumblr for the Oct 3, 2013 post about Melba Roy Moulton.
The post includes the above photo (I believe the source is the NASA archives) of Moulton, who served as Assistant Chief of Research Programmes at NASA’s Trajectory and Geodynamics Division. She graduated from Howard University in 1950. Check out the tumblr for more info about her career.
More information about Moulton can be found on Natalia Cecire’s Tumblr, which includes the NASA poster below featuring Moulton’s image.
Thanks to Andrea Hermann, who suggested this post:
The Washington Post recently had an obituary by Emily Langer for Dr. Ruth Benerito. Dr. Benerito, an Agriculture Department chemist, was credited with helping create wrinkle-free cotton. She died Oct. 5 at age 97.
This picture is credited in the obituary to the Lemelson-MIT Program.
Thanks to Hadiza Mohammed, creator of the Women Rock Science Tumblr, for calling attention to mathematician, and electronic music composer Delia Derbyshire. Derbyshire realized Ron Grainer’s score for the theme song of the popular science fiction series Doctor Who, but never received credit or royalties for her work.
Derbyshire’s obituary in The Guardian can be found here.
If you’d like to hear more of her work, check out Last FM which has 15 examples of her music.
Thanks to Hadiza Mohammed, creator of the Women Rock Science Tumblr, for calling attention to inventor Marie Van Brittan Brown. You can read about Brown on the African-American registry.
According to the registry, Brown invented Closed Circuit TV (CCTV) for home surveillance as a way to keep people safer. Her invention with her husband, patent, #3,482,037 was reported in the New York Times in 1969.
Thanks to Jacque Wernimont, who pointed out this interesting Past Imperfect Smithsonian blog post by Natasha Geiling.
The post includes this photo from the Smithsonian Institution Archives of Annie Jump Cannon at her desk at the Harvard Observatory.
Geiling’s article describes work by Cannon and other women who conducted research with Astronomer Pickering. Read her post to see how the contributions of these women was (or was not) acknowledged.
The above photo, also featured on the blog, shows Pickering and the group of “Harvard computers.”