Williamina Paton Fleming

Thanks to librarian Sam Kome, who passed along this clipping from the Library of Congress archive of an article about Fleming in a newspaper from North Dakota October 18, 1906. Willison, Williams County, N.D.  The headline notes that “Mrs. Fleming has discovered six out of nine new stars.”

Williamina Paton Fleming - cut.png

Here is the article in the context of the page, between The Duel and A Nervous Wreck and right above A Wonderful Rose Garden.

Williamina Paton Fleming.png

More about Fleming (May 15, 1857 – May 21, 1911) here on Wikipedia about her work with Pickering at the Harvard College Observatory, including her discovery of the Horsehead Nebula.

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Mary Putnam Jacobi

Thank you to Chemist Katherine Van Heuvelen, who pointed out this book:


in which Jacobi is the first woman featured.  According to the the book, Jacobi was the “first woman admitted to France’s École du  Médecine.”

An Amazon review by InvisibleMonkeyhouse notes “The pivotal line of this book is delivered by Hertha Ayrton, who was a scientist, an author, a close friend of Marie Curie, and the inventor of a fan that dispersed noxious gas away from soldiers. She is quoted as saying: “Personally I do not agree with sex being brought into science at all. The idea of ‘women and science’ is entirely irrelevant. Either a woman is a good scientist or she is not; in any case she should be given opportunities, and her work should be studied from the scientific, not the sex, point of view.”

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Hertha Marks Ayrton

Hertha Marks Ayrton’s 162nd birthday

Thank you to Mathematician Sharon Lubkin, who called my attention to the Google doodle above, which was posted in honor of what would be Hertha Marks Ayrton’s 162nd birthday.   This led me to a fun jaunt through her Wikipedia page – all of which was new to me.  Check it out!

According to this page, you can read more here:

Appleyard, Rollo. The History of the Institution of Electrical Engineers. London: 1939; Ayrton, Hertha.

The Electric Arc. London: 1902; Crawford, Elizabeth. The Women’s Suffrage Movement: A Reference Guide 1866-1928.London: 1999;

Girton College Register, 1869-1946;

Hirsch, Pam.Barbara Leigh Smith Bodichon: feminist, artist and rebel. London:1998; Mason, Joan.

“Hertha Ayrton and the Admission of Women to the Royal Society of London,” Notes and Records of the Royal Society. London: 1991;

Sharp, Evelyn.Hertha Ayrton: A Memoir. London: 1926.


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Thelma Prince

Thanks to librarian Allegra Swift, who passed along this tweet


pointing to this article about Thelma Prince, who contributed to the development of the polio vaccine.



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Sylvia Miller

Sylvia Miller in 1973 and today

Thank you to Kathy Kobayashi, who forwarded this LA Times article featuring a new book about the women who worked as programmers at JPL by Nathalia Holt, “Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars.”  See the article for a recent interview with Sylvia Miller.

The picture above, from the LA Times Article is captioned “Sylvia Miller, pictured on the left in 1973, was one of the last human computers hired by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in 1968. She is now one of the female subjects in a newly released book by Nathalia Holt titled “Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars.” Miller went on to have a 40-year career at JPL and retired in 2008. (Left: Courtesy of Jet Propulsion Laboratory / Right: Tim Berger / Staff Photographer)”

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Lucy Jones


Image of Jones in the LA Times Article credited to KNBC.

Thanks to physicist Karen Daniels, who pointed out this LA Times article about the retirement of U.S. Geological Survey seismologist Lucy Jones.  The article notes that  “She’s retiring from the USGS this month to help officials develop science-based policies related to climate change, tsunamis and other kinds of natural disasters.”

The article discusses her interesting educational history and career, which included an undergraduate degree in Chinese language and literature that led to her becoming the first American scientist to enter China in 1979 to study earthquakes.


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Stephanie Shirley

Stephanie Shirley .png

Thank you to Lauren Buchsbaum, who pointed out this NPR Ted Radio hour piece on Dame Stephanie Shirley, a Kindertransport survivor who made it big in the tech business (pre-Mac and pc) and created a company for women to work and achieve while raising an autistic child.

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Mary Anning


Thanks to Allegra Swift for the suggestion of this JSTOR Daily article about forgotten female fossilists!



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Ellen Williams

Ellen Williams_Headshot.jpg

Thanks to Sam Kome, who pointed out this article on innovation in battery technology.  The effort is led by Dr. Ellen Williams, director of ARPA-E.

Here’s a release from Reuters:   A wing of the U.S. Department of Energy focused on breakthrough technologies may soon give billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk’s most recent foray into energy storage a run for its money, the unit’s director said.

Read more in an article in The Guardian and another in venturebeat.com.




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Aprille Ericsson


As part of the observance of Chicagoland Engineers Week, February 21-27, 2016, professional engineers, engineering societies, major corporations, CEO’s, and civic leaders will attend the Washington Award Benefit on Friday evening, February 26th at the Chicago Hilton and Towers, 720 S. Michigan, Chicago.  The Washington Award reminds us that our first president was an engineer, and recognizes an engineer whose accomplishments have “pre-eminently promoted the happiness, comfort and well-being of humanity.”  Dr. Aprille Ericsson,  Aerospace Engineer. NASA Gouda Space Flight Center will be this year’s 103rd recipient of the Washington Award.    She was the first female, and the first African-American female, to receive a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Howard University and the first African-American female to receive a Ph.D. in engineering at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.

Ref http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/space/frontiers/ericsson.html

In addition, nearly 100 students (3rd grade through high school) will be honored to recognize their accomplishments in a variety of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (S.T.E.M.) program competitions (Future City Competition, Bridge Building Contest, FIRST Robotics Competition, Essay/Poster Contest, Illinois Science Fair and Destination ImagiNation, Inc.).

For further information visit  www.thewashingtonaward.org or contact Laura Burke, Western Society of Engineers Chicagoland Engineers Week 2016 Committee at  wse@cbbel.com.



Here’s some information about Dr. Ericsson on the NASA site


Thank you to Robert Johnson, SE, who sent GGSTEM this terrific information about Dr. Ericsson and many positive upcoming and past STEM outreach activities in Chicago (especially engineering-related programs). 

  • 2016 Chicagoland eWEEK (Engineers Week):    There will be  numerous  events to  celebrate the  engineering  profession,  exceptional  S.T.E.M.  students   and the ‘educate’   students  of all ages and the  public as to the accomplishments  of  engineers.
    February  19,  2016     –  Chicago Hilton & Towers,  Chicago
  • February 21-27, 2016     DiscovereINTRODUCE A GIRL TO ENGINEERING
  • February 25, 2016   Girls engineering day  hosted by Argonne Labs
  • Engineers Week   Benefit February 26, 2016 @   the Chicago  Hilton and Towers . Dozens of Exceptional S.T.E.M. students are honored at the Engineers  Week Banquet  Engineer  Aprille Ericsson, PhD.  to  receive the  prestigious  ‘Washington Award’    and students from several   engineering outreach programs   are honored.  2015 Pictures
  • IIT –Rice Campus Dupage Area eWEEK Expo   (Huge)  Depending on weather and parallel  program(s)  this  Expo can  draw  1000-2000 visitors!!!!!!Saturday,  February 27, 2016.  More info herePoster.
  • February  27, 2016 Northwestern  University   hosts   44th annual Career Day for Girls
  • February 27, 2016 Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day (@UIC)
  • Program  February  27,  2016   @  IIT   National Society of Black Engineers  NSBE   (Chicago)  eWEEK program.   Tickets for the EXPO.
  • February 27, 2016  Chicago MATHCOUNTS Competition, CNA Headquarters, 333 S. Wabash Ave. Chicago, IL 60604.  8AM – 2PM
  • Sunday,    February 27, 28, 2016      (Waiting for exact  details) CAFamily “Engineering”  Day   http://www.architecture.org/efesthttp://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?id=9434028    Chicago engineers explain to children, students of all ages ++ parents how engineers shaped Chicago’s famed skyline.
  • US F.I.R.S.T  Robotics  Midwest Regional Finals  @ UIC  March 31 -April 2, 2016
  • May 7, 2016  International Bridge Contest
  • Coming in August:  The ICEBOX Derby   (2016).  Pictures from August 15, 2015.  Take   note of the African-Americans  girls  in the pictures !   You  may  even   recognize   Amandla Stenberg   (Hunger Games)   in a few  of the pictures! 

Past Chicago events — GOOD NEWS




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