Virginia Changemakers
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Virginia Women in History 2000

Margaret Brent


A prominent Catholic in the Maryland colony, Margaret Brent later settled in Virginia where she and her siblings acquired extensive property and…

Jennie Dean

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Born enslaved, Jennie Dean founded a school for African Americans in Manassas.

Mary Julia Baldwin

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For thirty-four years Mary Julia Baldwin was principal of the seminary that later became Mary Baldwin University.

Clementina Rind

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Clementina Rind was the first female printer in colonial Virginia.



The daughter of the powerful paramount Indian chief, Pocahontas has become enshrined in American history as a savior of the Virginia colony.

Dolley Madison

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A quintessential hostess, Dolley Madison was at the center of the national political scene for many years and defined the role of First Lady in the…

Maggie Lena Walker

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Businesswoman and community activist Maggie Walker was the first African American woman to charter and serve as president of a bank.

Lila Meade Valentine

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Social reformer Lila Meade Valentine was a founder and president of the Equal Suffrage League of Virginia.

Ellen Glasgow

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A best-selling novelist, Ellen Glasgow challenged southern social and cultural conventions through her writing and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in…

Sarah Lee Fain

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Sarah Lee Fain was one of the first two women elected to Virginia's General Assembly.

Willa Cather

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Pulitzer Prize–winning author Willa Cather was acclaimed for her novels portraying the settlers and frontier life of the American Plains.

Ella Graham Agnew

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Ella Agnew was a pioneer in home demonstration work in rural Virginia early in the twentieth century.