Notable Indigenous Women in History

As this month of celebration for the vital role of women in society comes to a close, I’m reminded to always honor the women in my life, both past and present. The everyday heroes that have given so much in order for us to survive and thrive! Moms and Grandmas especially!

There are thousands of Indigenous and First Nations women that have amazing stories of inspiration. I’ve read just a few of their personal experiences shared during this past month of national recognition.

The following links list only a small sampling of the warriors, entrepreneurs, healers, artists and leaders whose names have been recorded in writing. There are countless others that journeyed before us to lead the way for future generations.

One Who Walks With the StarsOglala Lakota warrior in the Battle of Little Bighorn

Minnie Spotted-Wolf (Blackfeet), first female Native American Marine

Madeline La Framboise (1740–1846), Odawa fur trader

Susan La Flesche Picotte (1865–1915), Omaha/Ponca/Iowa, first female Native American physician

Lyda Conley (Wyandot, 1874–1946), first Native American female attorney, and first Native American woman admitted to argue a case before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Maria Tallchief (1925–2013), Osage ballerina

Wilma Mankiller (1945–2010), first female Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation

Louise Erdrich (born 1954), Turtle Mountain Ojibwe writer

Winona LaDuke (born 1959), White Earth Ojibwe activist, environmentalist, economist, and writer