Weird History

The Greatest Renaissance Women in American History

List Rules
People on this list must be 1) American women who 2) have proven expertise in more than one field. Can be from any time in American history.

While many technical and scientific professions were closed off to women until recently, renaissance women still managed to make their mark on American history. These polymaths excelled in a wide range of fields, from business to medicine to politics. Famous renaissance women have led incredible lives while breaking the traditional barriers that kept them out of their fields.

Did you know that Elizabeth Blackwell was the first woman to receive a medical degree in the United States while also being a prominent social and moral reformer? Or that actress Hedy Lamarr also helped invent innovative radio communications technology that's used in modern Wi-Fi? Or that TV chef and author Julia Child was also an intelligence officer in World War II whose activities weren't declassified until 2008?

These American women changed history and excelled in multiple fields, while usually also balancing the rigors of family life and raising children. Upvote the most remarkable renaissance woman or women you see below and add any talented females throughout American history who have made a difference and excelled in a variety fields, arts, and industries.
  • Grace Hopper
    Photo: Cynthia Johnson/The LIFE Images Collection / Getty Images
    381 VOTES
    • Age: Dec. at 85 (1906-1992)
    • Birthplace: New York City, New York
    • Profession: Programmer, Mathematician, Computer scientist, Scientist
  • Hedy Lamarr
    Photo: Silver Screen Collection / Getty Images
    343 VOTES
    • Age: Dec. at 85 (1914-2000)
    • Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
    • Profession: Pin-up girl, Inventor, Scientist, Actor, Engineer
  • Sally Ride
    Photo: Unknown / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain
    251 VOTES
    • Age: Dec. at 61 (1951-2012)
    • Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States of America
    • Profession: Physicist, Astronaut
  • 4
    209 VOTES
    • Age: Dec. at 36 (1949-1986)
    • Birthplace: Akron, Ohio
    • Profession: Astronaut, Scientist, Engineer