Profile picture
In Visibility @VisibilityToday
, 25 tweets, 14 min read Read on Twitter
In honour of #WomenHistoryMonth, we'll be showcasing the work of famous disabled women forgotten by history. #DisabilityHistory
On Day 1, meet Ragnhild Kata (1873 - 1947), the woman who helped Helen Keller learn how to speak.

Ragnhild was the first deafblind person in Norway to receive proper schooling, eventually learning to speak and inspiring Helen Keller to do the same #DisabilityHistory
2: Annette Kellermann (1886-1975) wore leg braces & swam to build muscle.

She set multiple records in 1902 races, was the first woman to appear naked in a Hollywood film (A Daughter of the Gods, 1916) & launched a swimwear range after being told to 'cover up'. #WomenHistoryMonth
3. Eliza Suggs (1876 - 1908) got an education as a disabled black woman in the 19th century.

Refusing to be displayed as a museum ‘oddity’, she published a book, Shadow and Sunshine, in 1906, writing autobiographically and on her mother’s life as a slave #WomenHistoryMonth
4. Rosa May Billinghurst (1875 - 1953) was a disabled UK suffragette & women’s rights activist.

As a child, she caught polio which left her unable to walk. She was known as the ‘cripple suffragette’, & used a hand-propelled tricycle to attend campaigns #WomensHistoryMonth
5. Adelaide Knight (1871 - 1950), pictured with her husband Donald Adolphus Brown, was another prominent disabled suffragette.

She had mobility issues,was secretary of the Women’s Social & Political Union, & was known as the leader of working women #WomensHistoryMonth
6. Harriet Tubman (1822 - 1913) was born a slave, & a traumatic brain injury caused her epilepsy & hypersomnia.

She escaped slavery, made 13 missions on the Underground Railroad to free over 70 family & friends, & was an armed spy during the US Civil War #WomensHistoryMonth
7. Gabriela Brimmer (1947 - 2000). Born with Cerebral Palsy, she became a writer & activist for disabled people in Mexico.

She founded the Association for the Rights of People with Motor Disabilities, & her life was chronicled in the film Gaby: A True Story #WomensHistoryMonth
8. Jazzie Collins (1958 - 2013) was a black, HIV positive trans woman who campaigned on behalf of PoC, disabled & LGBTQ+ people in San Francisco.

In 2015, Jazzie’s Place, the first shelter in the US for the adult LGBTQ+ community, was opened in her honour #WomensHistoryMonth
9. Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923) was France’s most celebrated stage actress

Her leg was amputated after an injury, but she kept performing, & designed a palanquin she was carried in by two men, decorated in the Louis XV style with white sides & gold trim #InternationalWomensMonth
10. Baroness (Nicky) Chapman (1961-2009) was the first person with a congenital disability to sit in the House of Lords.

Born with brittle bone disease, she was a vocal critic of assisted suicide, & campaigned for disability rights & access all her life #InternationalWomensMonth
11. Fannie Lou Hamer (1917-1977) was a voting & women’s rights activist, & a leader of the US civil rights movement.

She co-founded the Freedom Democratic Party despite long-term damage from polio, and famously said ‘I am sick & tired of being sick & tired!’ #WomensHistoryMonth
12.Judi Chamberlin (1944-2010) was a leader in the psychiatric survivors movement

Diagnosed as schizophrenic, she was involuntarily committed to a psych ward in the 1960s. The abuse there lead her to advocate for the civil liberties of mental health patients #WomensHistoryMonth
13. Laura Ann Hershey (1962-2010) was a disabled poet, journalist, speaker, feminist, & disability rights activist.

She was a critic of paternalistic attitudes towards disabled people, and wrote widely in their defence on her website Crip Commentary #WomensHistoryMonth
14. Margaret of Castello (1287-1320) was born blind & with dwarfism, & was abandoned by her parents in a church.

Her faith meant she was close to the town’s poor, eventually starting a school & caring for the children. She was beatified by the Pope in 1609 #WomensHistoryMonth
15. Dorothea Lange (1895-1965) was a photographer who travelled the world taking pictures of the disenfranchised.

She walked with a limp because of childhood polio, & said of her disability: ‘I am aware of the force and power of it, it formed me & guided me’ #WomensHistoryMonth
16. Wilma Mankiller (1945 - 2010) was involved in the 1969 Native American occupation of Alcatraz Island.

Diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, she worked with the Cherokee Nation and was the first ever woman to become principal chief #WomensHistoryMonth
17. Sojourner Truth (1797-1883) escaped slavery & famously won a legal battle against a white man to get her son back

Famous for her ‘Ain’t I a woman?’ Speech at the Ohio Women’s Rights Convention, it’s little noted she had a disabled right hand all her life #WomensHistoryMonth
18. Pat Parker (1944-1989) was a black, lesbian feminist poet and activist with breast cancer.

She founded the Black Women’s Revolutionary Council, was the director of the Feminist Women’s Health Center, & wrote the famous poem Womanslaughter #WomensHistoryMonth
19. Noor Inayat Khan (1914-1944) was a WW2 hero & the first female wireless operative sent to occupied France.

Her swollen fingers, caused by constant chilblains, meant her coding style was unique. Captured & tortured, she died without betraying the UK #InternationalWomensMonth
20. Jackie Winnow (1947-1991) was a lesbian-feminist activist with cancer.

She founded the Women’s Cancer Resource Centre, & was the co-ordinator for the L/G & Aids unit of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission. #InternationalWomensMonth
21. Barbara Jordan (1936-1996) was a lawyer, educator, politician, & Civil Rights leader.

Diagnosed with MS, she was the first Southern black woman elected to Congress, & the first to deliver the keynote address at the Democrats’ National Convention #WomensHistoryMonth
22. Loretta Loach (1957-2011) was a journalist, activist & documentary maker who covered the role of women in the UK Miner’s Strike

Lymphoma caused severe lung damage, but she continued to examine intersections of privilege & published a book in 2009 #WomensHistoryMonth
23. Edith Cooper (1862-1913) was a disabled lesbian writer who co-wrote with her partner, Katharine Bradley, under the pseudonym Michael Field

Edith was increasingly disabled by rheumatism, but they produced over 40 works, & were friends of Robert Browning #WomensHistoryMonth
24. Eva Gore-Booth (1870-1926) was an Irish lesbian poet, dramatist, suffragist & activist, with TB and related chronic illnesses.

She was a committee member of the National Union of Women’s Suffrage Society and member of the British Peace Movement in WW1 #WomensHistoryMonth
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to In Visibility
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member and get exclusive features!

Premium member ($3.00/month or $30.00/year)

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!