With the U.S. military outlining timelines to allow women into combat roles, we take a look back at the history of women in the U.S. military.
Women follow their husbands into war, serving as cooks and nurses in military camps. (Source: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation / Photo Source: Archives of the Capitol)
Disguised as a man, Deborah Sampson fights for America’s freedom. Her identity is discovered after she is wounded, leading to an honorable discharged. (Source: Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) / Photo Source: MHS)
During the War of 1812, two women—Mary Marshall and Mary Allen—serve as nurses aboard the USS United States. (Source: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation/Photo Source: Historical Society of Philadelphia)
Dr. Mary Walker becomes the first woman to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor after her work in the field. (Source: National Library of Medicine (NLM) / Photo Source: NLM)
Toward the end of World War I, women begin to enlist in the military for the first time and serve in official roles (rather than as civilians). (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: history.navy.mil)
More than 400,000 women serve in the U.S. military during World War II, working in a variety of roles. (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: National Archives)
At sea and on land, women serve as doctors and nurses in various branches of the U.S. military. (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: National Archives)
At bases around the world, women served as mechanics. (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: National Archives)
Women Air Service Pilots, or WASPs, fly and maintain planes for the Army Air Corps. (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: National Archives)
Women train air crews in the Army Air Corps. (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: National Archives)
In 1976, women are accepted into the U.S. military academies for the first time. (Source: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation/ Photo Source: U.S. Army)
In 1991, women are authorized to fly combat missions in the Persian Gulf War. More than 41,000 women are deployed; two are captured. (Source: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation / Photo Source: U.S. Air Force)
In 2000, Captain Kathleen McGrath becomes the first woman to take command of a U.S. Naval vessel when she assumes control of the USS Jarrett. (Source: history.navy.mil / Photo Source: U.S. Navy)
Army Specialist Shoshana Johnson (above) becomes the first Black or Hispanic female POW when she is captured in Iraq. She and her fellow captives, including Private First Class Jessica Lynch, are freed after 22 days in a daring rescue mission by the Marines. (Photo Source: U.S. Marine Corps)
Fabulous slide show to help educate that women have been in many roles throughout our history.
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