A History of Women’s History Month 


March isn’t just the longest month of the year. It’s also Women’s History Month in the United States! This celebration of the advancements of women acknowledges the hard work of women in American history. But there’s a lot we don’t know about it. 

Initially, Women’s History Month began as a small celebration in 1978 in Santa Rosa, California. It was started by The Education Task Force of the Sonoma County Commission on the Status of Women. At first, it was called Women’s History Week; it was set to correspond with March 8th, since that’s International Women’s Day. Soon, the idea began to multiply until it reached many parts of the country, with more counties initiating their own Women’s History Week the next year.  

In 1980, a group led by the National Women’s History Project pushed the government until February 1980, when President Jimmy Carter proclaimed the week a national holiday. Later presidents continued this. In 1987, Congress passed a law which asked the president to proclaim  March “Women’s History Month” annually. Presidents have been adhering to this since 1995.  

Something I was surprised to find out is that Women’s History Month has a theme. It is chosen each year by the National Women’s History Alliance. This year, the theme is “Visionary Women: The Champions of Peace & Nonviolence.” It acknowledges women who have pushed for peace and against unfairness. So be sure to celebrate! 

Happy Women’s History Month!  

“Women’s History Month.” National Women’s History Museum, 2019, www.womenshistory.org/events/womens-history-month.