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This Week in History: Events in February

Founding of labor Zionist group Pioneer Women

February 1, 1925

Sophie Udin and six other women founded Pioneer Women, a labor Zionist women's organization based in New York City. Pioneer Women exists today as Na'amat USA.

Hadassah nurses Rachel Landy and Rose Kaplan with Eva Leon, Jerusalem, 1913

Rae D. Landy arrives in Jerusalem

February 2, 1913

Born in Lithuania, Rae D. Landy graduated with the first class of nursing students in Cleveland, OH. She went on to work in Jerusalem with Hadassah and later the United States Army Nurse Corps.

Justine Wise Polier

Judge Justine Wise Polier retires

February 3, 1973

Judge Justine Wise Polier retired from the New York Family Court, after 38 years spent trying to use the bench to assist children and redress discrimination.

Madeleine Albright

Secretary of State Madeleine Albright reveals her Jewish origins

February 3, 1997

Newly installed U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright revealed the uncovering of her Jewish origins.

Naomi Adler

Naomi Adler is named as first female CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia

February 3, 2014

“You have to take risks with vision in mind,” says Naomi Adler, first female CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia.

Gratz, Rebbeca - still image [media]

Rebecca Gratz founds first Jewish Sunday School

February 4, 1838

Rebecca Gratz and a dedicated group of Philadelphia Jewish women established the first Jewish Sunday School.

Ann F. Lewis in New Hampshire

Ann F. Lewis appointed National Chair of the Democratic Party's Women's Vote Center

February 4, 2002

Ann F. Lewis was appointed National Chair of the Democratic Party's Women's Vote Center.

Sheryl Sandberg

During IPO, Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg still finds time to aim high for women

February 5, 2012

"Sheryl Sandberg is the real deal."

YWHA-Bella Unterberg - still image [media]

Founding of Young Women's Hebrew Association in NY

February 6, 1902

The first independent Young Women's Hebrew Association was founded in New York City.

Ruth Sager

Birth of Ruth Sager, innovative scientific achiever

February 7, 1918

Birth of Ruth Sager, Innovative Scientific Achiever

Creation of the Women's Rabbinic Alliance

February 8, 1976

The first recorded meeting of what would become the Women's Rabbinic Network took place.

Claudia Dreifus speaks on the art of the political interview

February 9, 1999

Journalist Claudia Dreifus highlighted her expertise in a talk on the art of the political interview given at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

The Vagina Monologues

Eve Ensler's "The Vagina Monologues" performed at Madison Square Garden

February 10, 2001

A sold-out presentation of Eve Ensler's "The Vagina Monologues" at Madison Square Garden raised $1 million for Ensler's V-Day movement.

Adlene Harrison becomes first Jewish female big-city mayor

February 11, 1976

Adlene Harrison became the first Jewish female mayor of a major American city when she was appointed mayor of Dallas.

Blume, Judy - still image [media]

Author and anti-censorship advocate Judy Blume is born

February 12, 1938

Judy Blume says, “Those of us who write do it because there are stories inside us burning to get out."

Henrietta Szold

Death of Henrietta Szold

February 13, 1945

Henrietta Szold, the founder of Hadassah: The Women's Zionist Organization of America, died in Jerusalem.

National Council of Jewish Women's Original Badge

Los Angeles Council of Jewish Women opens day nursery

February 13, 1913

The Council of Jewish Women in Los Angeles, California opened a day nursery for "children of working mothers of all nationalities."

Eve Ensler - 2010

Eve Ensler establishes V-Day, demanding that violence against women and girls must end

February 14, 1998

Eve Ensler:"I am proposing that we reconceive the dream."

Susan Brownmiller

"Against Our Will" author Susan Brownmiller is born

February 15, 1935

Susan Brownmiller: "My chosen path – to fight against physical harm, specifically the terror of violence against women."

First Conference on Feminism and Orthodoxy is held

February 16, 1997

The first Conference on Feminism and Orthodoxy took place in New York City, leading to the founding of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance.

Arendt, Hannah - still image [media]

Hannah Arendt's "Eichmann in Jerusalem" appears in "The New Yorker"

February 16, 1963

The first of the articles that, in expanded form, would become "Eichmann in Jerusalem," Hannah Arendt's most controversial work, was published in "The New Yorker."

Florence Prag Kahn

Florence Prag Kahn elected as first Jewish woman in U.S. Congress

February 17, 1925

Florence Prag Kahn won a special election, becoming the fifth woman and first Jewish woman to serve in the United States Congress.

Friedan, Betty - still image [media]

Publication of "The Feminine Mystique" by Betty Friedan

February 17, 1963

Publication of "The Feminine Mystique" by Betty Friedan; the book is credited with sparking the modern feminist movement.

Regina Spektor

Singer-songwriter Regina Spektor is born

February 18, 1980

Regina Spektor gets "lost in the sounds."

Stella Adler

Stella Adler premieres Awake and Sing

February 19, 1935

Stella Adler premieres Awake and Sing.

Theda Bara

"New York Times" profile of silent film star, Theda Bara

February 20, 1916

Silent film star Theda Bara was profiled in the "New York Times," following her appearance in "A Fool There Was" in 1915.

Batwoman Proposes

Batwoman proposes marriage to Maggie Sawyer

February 20, 2013

"Batwoman is an important character, and a socially important one that has meaning that extends well beyond the printed pages of the world she lives in."

Wanda Landowska - 2

Early music harpsichordist Wanda Landowska plays Bach at New York City's Town Hall

February 21, 1942

Wanda Landowska, credited with reviving harpsichord music in the 20th century, performed Bach's "Goldberg Variations" at New York City's Town Hall. It was the first 20th-century performance of this work on the harpsichord.

"New Orleans Times-Picayune" celebrates 100th birthday of Elizabeth D.A. Cohen, Louisiana's first practicing female physician

February 22, 1920

The "New Orleans Times-Picayune" published an interview with Elizabeth D.A. Cohen, the first practicing female physician in Louisiana, on her 100th birthday.

Judith Kaye

Judith Kaye is nominated as Chief Judge of New York State Court

February 22, 1993

New York Judge Judith Kaye was nominated by Governor Mario Cuomo to become the first female Chief Judge of the New York State Court of Appeals.

Passover Music Box

Singer Shirley Cohen Steinberg records the beloved Passover song “One Morning”

February 23, 1951

Singer Shirley Cohen Steinberg records the beloved Passover song One Morning.

Henrietta Szold (left) with the rest of the Provisional Zionist Committee, New York, c. 1915

Founding of Hadassah: The Women's Zionist Organization of America

February 24, 1912

Founding of Hadassah, the organization which brought American Jewish women into the ranks of Zionism's most influential activists.

Rose Pesotta, 1965

Labor activist Rose Pesotta organizes in Akron, Ohio

February 25, 1936

Labor activist Rose Pesotta aided striking workers of Goodyear Rubber tire factory in Akron, Ohio.

Sally_Fox.jpg - still image [media]

Death of artist and photograph editor Sally Fox

February 26, 2006

Sally Fox - "I am driven to try to document what women are really doing, so they won't be taken for granted."

Natalie Portman

Natalie Portman wins Oscar for Best Actress

February 27, 2011

Natalie Portman was awarded the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in Black Swan.

Death of Texan Jeanette Miriam Goldberg, organizer of Texas NJCW chapter & Jewish Chautauqua Society

February 28, 1935

Death of Texan Jeanette Miriam Goldberg, a leading figure in the National Council of Jewish Women and the Jewish Chautauqua Society.

Rabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus

Rabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus installed as president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis

February 28, 2009

Rabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus installed as president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), the world's oldest and largest group of Jewish clergy.

Elizabeth Swados

Elizabeth Swados’ play "Ten Years of Hope" opens

February 29, 2004

'My faith is very practical. It is about helping people to sing, dance and make shows."

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "This Week in History: Events in February." (Viewed on July 30, 2014) <http://jwa.org/thisweek/feb>.

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