Profile America — The first woman to serve in Congress took her seat on this date in 1917.
Barely a month later, Jeannette Rankin of Montana shortly became one of the few representatives to vote against entry into World War I, a stand that contributed to her defeat when she ran for the Senate in 1918. She reentered Congress in 1940, and putting her principles ahead of office holding, cast the lone vote against declaring war on Japan after Pearl Harbor in 1941.
Her political career, which began before women gained the right to vote, ended with her term in early 1943. Nearly 64 percent of female citizens over 18 voted in the 2012 election, and nearly 73 percent report being registered to vote.
You can find more facts about America’s people, places and economy from the American Community Survey at www.census.gov.