Lost Splendor

Past and present by an aspiring archivist and new Bostonian.
Posts tagged "women"

"Women picket during Ladies Tailors Strike", 1910 via U.S National Archives

Two Unidentified Women Fencing, 1885 (by George Eastman House)

Miss Sanderson’s Parasol Self-Defense, 1908:

"Then Miss Sanderson came to the attack, and the demonstration showed her to be as capable with the stick as the sword. She passed it from hand to hand so quickly that the eye could scarcely follow the movements, and all the while her blows fell thick and fast. Down slashes, upper cuts, side swings, jabs and thrusts followed in quick succession, and the thought arose, how would a ruffian come off if he attacked this accomplished lady, supposing she had either walking-stick, umbrella, or parasol at the time? " 

- J. St. A. Jewell, “The Gymnasiums of London: Part X. — Pierre Vigny’s” Health and Strength, May 1904, pages 173-177. (via » Miss Sanderson and the womanly art of parasol self defence)

"Aluminum casting. The heads of these heat-treated pistons must be spotted prior to Brinell hardness testing. Young women are employed for this job by a large Midwest aluminum foundry now converted to war production." Ohio, 1942 (via Shorpy Historical Photo Archive)

"A pilot of the U.S. Women’s Air Force Service at Avenger Field, Texas, in 1943" by Peter Stackpole (via LIFE)

Onna-Bugeisha: Japan, 19th Century (via Imgur)

"An onna-bugeisha (女武芸者) was a type of female warrior belonging to the Japanese upper class. Many wives, widows, daughters, and rebels answered the call of duty by engaging in battle, commonly alongside samurai men. They were members of the bushi(samurai) class in feudal Japan and were trained in the use of weapons to protect their household, family, and honor in times of war. They also represented a divergence from the traditional “housewife” role of the Japanese woman. They are sometimes mistakenly referred to as female samurai, although this is an oversimplification. Onna bugeisha were very important people in ancient Japan. Significant icons such as Empress Jingu, Tomoe Gozen, Nakano Takeko, and Hōjō Masako were all onna bugeisha who came to have a significant impact on Japan.” via Wikipedia

Votes for Women to President Wilson, World War I

Suffragette: England, 1910 

“Women being arrested in Chicago for defying a ban on wearing brief swimsuits in public. Women were meant to cover-up when not in the water”

- Australian National Maritime Museum via (Retronaut)

Girls Rifle Team, University of Maryland c. 1925 (via Via)

Nina Lobkovskaya, Red Army Sniper.  Click for Source.

Snipers Catherine Golovakha and Nina Kovalenko, c. WWII. (via English Russia)

Maria Leontievna Bochkareva [1889-1920] via (via Wikipedia)

Maria Leontievna Bochkareva (RussianМария Леонтьевна Бочкарева, née Frolkova, nicknamed Yashka, 1889–1920) was a Russian woman who fought in World War I and formed the Women’s Battalion of Death.

Of a peasant family, Maria Frolkova was born in the Novgorod Guberniya in 1889. She left home aged fifteen to marry Afanasy Bochkarev and they moved to Tomsk, Siberia where they worked as laborers. When her husband began to assault her, Bochkareva left him and entered a relationship with a local named Yakov Buk. She and Buk established a butcher shop, but in May, 1912, Buk was arrested for larceny and sent to Yakutsk. Bochkareva followed him into exile, primarily on foot, and the couple established another butcher shop. Buk was caught stealing again and sent to the remote settlement of Amga in 1913, and once again Bochkareva followed him. Buk began drinking heavily and soon became abusive.

At the outbreak of World War I in 1914, Bochkareva left Buk and returned to Tomsk. In November, she managed to join the 25th Tomsk Reserve Battalion of the Imperial Russian Army by securing the personal permission of Tsar Nicholas II. Men of the regiment treated her with ridicule or sexually harassed her until she proved her mettle in battle[citation needed]. In the following years, Bochkareva was twice wounded and decorated three times for bravery. She bayoneted at least one German soldier to death. (To End All Wars, Hochschild, at 282.)

After the abdication of the Tsar in March 1917, she was charged with creating an all-female combat unit by Minister of WarAlexander Kerensky. This was the first women’s battalion to be organized in Russia. Bochkareva’s 1st Russian Women’s Battalion of Death initially attracted around 2,000 women volunteers, but the commander’s strict discipline drove all but around 300 dedicated women soldiers out of the unit.

After a month of intensive training, Bochkareva and her unit were sent to the Russian western front to participate in the June Offensive. The unit was involved in one major battle, near the town of Smorgon. The women of the unit performed well in combat, but the vast majority of male soldiers, already long demoralised, had little inclination to continue fighting. Bochkareva herself was wounded in the battle and sent back to Petrograd to recuperate.

Bochkareva was only marginally involved in the creation of other women’s combat units formed in Russia during the spring and summer of 1917. Her unit was at the front at the time of the Bolshevik October Revolution and did not participate in the defense of the Winter Palace (this was another women’s unit, the 1st Petrograd Women’s Battalion). The unit disbanded after facing increasing hostility from the male troops remaining at the front. Bochkareva returned to Petrograd where she was initially detained by the Bolsheviks but released shortly thereafter. She secured permission to rejoin her family in Tomsk, but left for Petrograd again in early 1918. She claims to have then received a telegram asking her to take a message to General Lavr Kornilov, who was commanding a White Army in the Caucasus. After leaving Kornilov’s headquarters she was again detained by the Bolsheviks, and after learning her connection with the Whites, was scheduled to be executed. She was rescued, however, by a soldier who had served with her in the Imperial army in 1915 and who convinced the Bolsheviks to stay her execution. She was granted an external passport and allowed to leave the country. Bochkareva then made her way to Vladivostok, where she left for the United States by steamship in April, 1918.

She arrived in San Francisco and then made her way to New York and Washington, D.C, sponsored by the wealthy socialite Florence Harriman. She was given a meeting with President Woodrow Wilson on July 10, 1918, during which she begged the president to intervene in Russia. Wilson was apparently so moved by her emotional appeal that he responded with tears in his eyes and promised to do what he could.[1]

While in New York, Bochkareva dictated her memoirs, Yashka: My Life As Peasant, Exile, and Soldier to a Russian emigre journalist named Isaac Don Levine. After leaving the United States she traveled to Great Britain where she was granted an audience with King George V. The British War Office gave her funding to return to Russia. She arrived in Archangel in August 1918 and attempted to organize another unit, but failed.

In April 1919 she returned to Tomsk and attempted to form a women’s medical detachment under the White admiral Aleksandr Kolchak, but before she could complete this task she again was captured by the Bolsheviks. She was sent to Krasnoiarsk where she was interrogated for four months and finally sentenced to execution, found guilty of being an enemy of the people. The Cheka carried out her execution by firing squad on May 16, 1920.

Lyudmila Pavlichenko [1916-1974]: Successful Sniper during the second World War at age 24, History Student, Wartime Diplomat

An excerpt from her bibliographical profile within the Military Channel reads:

When Russian sniper Lyudmila Pavlichenko was interviewed by Time magazine in 1942, she derided the American media. 

"One reporter even criticized the length of the skirt of my uniform, saying that in America women wear shorter skirts and besides my uniform made me look fat, " she said. 
The length of skirt probably didn’t matter to the 309 Nazi soldiers Pavlichenko is credited with killing, or to the many Russians she inspired with her bravery and skill. 

Lyudmila Pavlichenko [1916-1978]

In June 1941, 24-year old Pavlichenko was in her fourth year of studying history at the Kiev University when Nazi Germany began its invasion of the Soviet Union.[3] Pavlichenko was among the first round of volunteers at the recruiting office, where she requested to join the infantry and subsequently she was assigned to the Red Army's 25th Rifle Division;[3] Pavlichenko had the option to become a nurse but refused; “I joined the army when woman were not yet accepted”.[3] There she became one of 2,000 female snipers in the Red Army, of whom about 500 ultimately survived the war. As a sniper, she made her first two kills near Belyayevka, using a Tokarev SVT-40 semi-automatic rifle with 3.5 telescopic sight. [3]

Pavlichenko was sent to Canada and the United States for a publicity visit and became the first Soviet citizen to be received by a U.S. President when Franklin Roosevelt welcomed her at the White House. Later, Pavlichenko was invited by Eleanor Roosevelt to tour America relating her experiences. While meeting with reporters in Washington, D.C. she was dumbfounded about the kind of questions put to her. “One reporter even criticized the length of the skirt of my uniform, saying that in America women wear shorter skirts and besides my uniform made me look fat”.[1][6] Pavlichenko appeared before the International Student Assembly being held in Washington, D.C., and later attended CIO meetings and made appearances and speeches in New York City. The United States gave her a Colt automatic pistol, and in Canada, she was presented with a sighted Winchester rifle, the latter of which is now on display at the Central Armed Forces Museum in Moscow. While visiting in Canada along with Vladimir Pchelintsev (fellow sniper) and Nikolai Krasavchenko (Moscow fuel commissioner), they were greeted by thousands at Toronto’s Union Station.

Having attained the rank of major, Pavlichenko never returned to combat but became an instructor and trained Soviet snipers until the war’s end.[3]In 1943, she was awarded the Gold Star of the Hero of the Soviet Union,[7] and was commemorated on a Soviet postage stamp.

[Wikipedia]  Image Source: EnglishRussia