Doodle-Worthy Women of September AND October 2013

I’ve fallen behind here at Speaking Up, so this month, I’ll be sharing a list of Doodle-Worthy Women born in the months of September and October. This super-sized list includes 2 honorees born in September and 4 born in October, none of whom have been recognized with a Google Doodle:

— Noor Jehan, whose legal name was Allah Wasai, was born September 21, 1926, and came to be known as one of the greatest singers in India and Pakistan. She specialized in music for films, and even directed one, making her the first female film director in Pakistan. Over a career span of 66 years, she recorded over 10,000 songs in multiple languages. She was honored with India’s President’s Award.

Noor Jehan, in a still from the 1946 film Anmol Ghadi.

Noor Jehan, in a still from the 1946 film Anmol Ghadi.

Ann Maria Reeves Jarvis, born September 30, 1832, was a local community organizer in what is now West Virginia. Her activism focused on women’s health and welfare, and she founded “Mothers’ Day Work Clubs” to meet these goals. These clubs became especially active during the Civil War, and were committed to helping both Confederate and Union soldiers who found themselves in Union-aligned West Virginia. She then extended the goal of the clubs to include a “Mother’s Friendship Day,” intended to promote community and family togetherness after the divisions of the war. Jarvis and her daughter, Anna Marie Jarvis, are considered the founders of Mother’s Day in the United States. Following Jarvis’s death, Woodrow Wilson eventually declared Mother’s Day a legally recognized holiday in the United States.

Dorothy Woolfolk, born October 1, 1913, was a key figure in American comic books, serving as the first female editor at DC Comics after holding leadership positions throughout the industry. Through this position she helped launch careers for several comics writers and illustrators. She was the first female author to contribute to the Wonder Woman storyline. Woolfolk has also received credit for contributing to the idea of kryptonite, Superman’s “Achilles heel.”

Fumiko Enchi (the pen name of Fumi Ueda) was born October 2, 1905, and was a prominent Japanese novelist and playwright. While she launched her career before World War II, she found critical and commercial success in the post-war period. Enchi’s first post-war novel won Japan’s Women’s Literature Prize, a prize she would go on to win again. Her works dealt with the female experience, particularly psychology and sexuality, within Japanese culture, making her one of the most prominent authors and commentators in post-war Japan. Enchi was honored by the Japan Art Academy and was awarded the Order of Culture and Person of Cultural Merit.

Portrait of Fumiko Enchi, date unknown.

Portrait of Fumiko Enchi, date unknown.

Emily Post, born October 27, 1872, is very well-known for her extensive writing on American etiquette. She started off her writing career with articles for magazines and several novels. Her 1922 book on etiquette, however, made her a household name and a prominent expert on manners and behavior. Post spoke frequently on the radio and published widely on this topic, including a syndicated newspaper column. Post is also the founder of the eponymous Emily Post Institute, which to this day staffs experts in etiquette to advise and consult for periodicals and businesses. The institute, and several of Post’s descendants, continue to update and promote etiquette. She is known for saying, on the topic of manners, “Manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others. If you have that awareness, you have good manners, no matter what fork you use.”

Portrait of Emily Post.

Portrait of Emily Post.

Marie Van Brittan Brown, born October 30, 1922, was an African-American inventor. She developed a camera system for home security, inventing both closed-circuit television (CCTV) and the concept of a home security system. In Brown’s original system, a camera moved between a set of holes, displaying the view through each to a monitor. Her system also included a remotely operated door locking and opening function. She and her husband were granted a patent for their idea in 1969.

Marie Van Brittan Brown, date unknown.

Marie Van Brittan Brown, date unknown.


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