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Q: Famous Single Women ( Answered,   10 Comments )
Subject: Famous Single Women
Category: Miscellaneous
Asked by: jlms5683-ga
List Price: $50.00
Posted: 25 Mar 2004 20:00 PST
Expires: 24 Apr 2004 21:00 PDT
Question ID: 320630
I'm looking for a list of famous women who never married. These women
can be living or dead, but it's crucial that they've been contributors
to society in a positive manner.
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
Answered By: bobbie7-ga on 25 Mar 2004 22:16 PST
Hi Jlms5683,

My search returned the following results for for famous women who never married.

Susan B. Anthony

The Champion of Women's Rights and Vote

?One of the principal reasons that women were given the right to vote
was largely due to the actions and determination of Susan B. Anthony.
(..) She grew to become the famous social reformer and women's
suffrage leader - a champion of women's rights. She learned from her
father and her Quaker upbringinga teaching of equality before God, and
through her strong sense of independence, devoted herself to this
cause for more than half a century.?

?Because Ms. Anthony never married, she had the time, freedom and
ability to travel.?

About Famous People


Dorothea Lynde Dix: Known as Dragon Dix

?Dorothea Dix  worked tirelessly for reform of mental hospitals and
the treatment of patients and prisoners. She was directly responsible
for historic changes, as well as served as the Superintendent of
Nurses during the Civil War.?

?As she never married, after the war she gave up her crusading and
spent most of her last years traveling.?

About Famous People


Elizabeth I of England

The most famous Queen of England, Elizabeth I was the last of the
Tudors and a monarch whose life featured war, discovery and religious
strife. She was also a poet, writer and - most notoriously - never

European History:


Barbara McClintock (1902 ? 1992)

Nobel Prize for Medicine - 1983

?She never married, devoting the rest of her life continuing her
research on genetic mutations.?

?Best known for being the first to demonstrate the action of
transposable genetic element, these pieces of DNA can insert
themselves at difference points in the genome, which are now called
"transposons" or the jumping beans, meaning they could move around.?

?Ms. McClintock was the recipient of several honorary doctors of
science degrees and many awards for her research. In 1983, she won the
Nobel Prize for Medicine. On December 8, 1983, she gave her Nobel
lecture entitled, "The significance of responses of the genome to

Notable Women in Science and Mathematics


Mary Cassatt - American impressionist artist

?One of the few women Impressionists, Mary Cassatt (1844-1926) had a
life of paradoxes: American born, she lived and worked in France; a
classically trained artist, she preferred the company of radicals;
never married,


Brigadier Dame Mary Tyrwhitt

?Brigadier Dame Mary Tyrwhitt - the last director of the British ATS
(Auxiliary Territorial Service established 1938) and the first
director of the Women's Royal Army Corps, when it was established in
1949. She was appointed OBE in 1946, and DBE in 1949. She never

Women of Achievement


Gertrude Bell

?Bell, one of the most famous women of her time, was a scholar,
historian, kingmaker, archaeologist and spy. (..)  She was also
responsible for the state first known as Mesopotamia - formed from the
Ottoman provinces of Mosul, Baghdad and Basra - and now known as

?While she never married, she had a long affair with married
Lieutenant-Colonel "Dick" Doughty-Wylie, VC, who died at Gallipoli.?

Evening Chronicle


Margaret Brent

?Margaret Brent lived from 1601 to 1671, and was a colonial landowner
and attorney for the governor of Maryland. She was a very influential
woman in colonial America, specifically in Maryland and the Northern
Neck of Virginia. She was the first colonial female landowner and is
considered to be the first female lawyer in America, as well as an
early feminist. (..) She is definitely an important figure in women?s

?Brent never married, and she died in Westmoreland County in 1671.?

History Point


Lise Meitner - Nuclear Physicist Extraordinaire

?When WWI erupted, Meitner returned to Austria to work in a field
hospital as a radiologist. She continued to meet and work with Hahn,
and in 1917, they announced the discover of protactinium, the parent
element of actinium. In 1918, she was named head of the physics
department at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute. In 1926, she was named
Germany's first female professor of physics at the University of
Berlin. Meitner and Hahn, who headed the chemistry department, worked
on many projects, sometimes separately and sometimes in collaboration.
Meitner continued to study beta and gamma radiation. She was an early
user of the Geiger counter in her testing. She was nominated for the
Nobel Prize several times during the 1920s and 1930s.?

?She never married and maintained an active interest in music throughout her life.?

Suite 101


Jane Austen

Jane Austen, well-known English author lived from 1775 to 1817.  She
wrote Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Northanger Abbey,
Emma, and Mansfield Park. She was never married

South Axholme English School


Jane Addams

?Jane Addams won the Nobel Peace Prize for her heroic efforts at
improving the lives of the poor. Jane Addams never married and devoted
her life to her work at Hull-House and to gaining rights for women and

?In addition to being an active member in the Progressive Party, she
served on the Chicago School Board, headed the National Conference of
Social Work, and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931 for her work with
the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom. On May 21,
1935, Jane Addams died in Chicago. She was a true pioneer for all
women. Even though she never held a political office in Chicago her
impact on American society was greater than many men who held a seat
at City Hall.?

Illinois Periodicals Online


Emily Bronte 

Emily Bronte, novelist and poet was never married.
Author of ?Wuthering Heights?

Britain Unlimited


Anne Bronte

Anne Bronte, novelist and poet was never married.

Written Works:
1846: ?Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell?. 
1847: ?Agnes Grey? (Acton Bell) 
1848: ?The Tenant of Wildfell Hall?

Britain Unlimited


Walladah bint Mustakfi

Walladah bint Mustakfi (c. 1001-1080 C.E.) Walladah was the daughter
of the caliph of Cordoba in Islamic Spain. Cordoba was a tolerant,
multicultural society, famous for its many libraries and sophisticated
literary life, in which women were often scholars. After her father's
death, Walladah inherited enough wealth to guarantee her independence.
She was well known as a poet and hosted literary gatherings for both
men and women. She had several famous love affairs, including one with
the prominent poet Ibn Zaydun, but never married.

Source: PBS


Mary Eliza Mahoney-(1845-1926) First African American Registered Nurse In Usa

"In 1878, at the age of thirty-three, she was admitted as a student
into the hospital's nursing program established by Dr. Marie
Zakrzewska. Sixteen months later, she was one of four who completed
the rigorous course (of forty-two who started with her). After
graduation she worked primarily as a private duty nurse for the next
thirty years all over the Eastern Seaboard of the United States. She
ended her nursing career as director of an orphanage in Long Island,
New York, the position she had held for a decade. She never married."

Lou?s Website


Maria Van Oosterwych

?Maria Van Oosterwych, Dutch (1630-1693):  She was the daughter of a
preacher who noticed her artistic talents and sent her to study with
Jan Davidsz de Heem in 1658 in Antwerp.  She worked slowly, building
up her marvelously finished positions, but she worked everyday.  (..) 
 She never married and gained an international reputation for her art.
 Her work is often attributed to de Heem or Willem van Oelst.?

Painting:  Vase of Tulips, Roses, and Other Flowers with Insects, 1669. 

Florida Community College at Jacksonville


Rosalba Carriera

?Rosalba Carriera, Italian (1675-1757): ?She was one of the
originators of the rococo style in Italy and France, plus being a
favorite of nobility.  (..)  She was elected to Rome's Academy of St.
Luke in 1705.  When a client encouraged her to visit Paris in 1720,
she was elected to the Royal Academy.  Rosalba returned to Venice,
where she lived on the Grand Canal with her widowed mother and younger
sister.  She never married.  Rosalba was also noted for her pastel
portraits.  In the 1660's four women were elected to the Academy.?

Painting:  Self-Portrait, Holding Portrait Of Her Sister, 1715.

Florida Community College at Jacksonville


Marie Genevieve Bouliar

?Marie Genevieve Bouliar, French (1762-1825):  ?She never married.  In
1795, she won the Prix d'Encouragement for her idealized painting of
the hetaera Aspasia (the courtesan of Pericles in ancient Athens).

Painting:  Portrait of Adelaide Binart (Mme. Alexander Lenoir),

Florida Community College at Jacksonville


Marie Corelli ? Novelist

Marie Corelli (real name "Mary Mackay") became the best selling author
in England, and the favorite of Queen Victoria, who ordered a
collection of all Marie's books. (..) She was the only author invited
to the coronation of Edward VII, and counted among her friends Mark
Twain, Ouida, the Empress Frederick of Germany, and many other writers
and members of royalty. Tennyson wrote her praises for her work Ardath
(1889), a book which did not sell very well relatively, but the one
Marie had always considered her best.?

?After Marie moved to Stratford-on-Avon in 1899, she crusaded to
preserve Shakespeare's shrine in the Church of the Holy Trinity and
worked to prevent some cottages once owned by Shakespeare's
descendants from being demolished for a Carnegie library. She also
helped establish Harvard House for visiting students of Harvard
University. She bought and restored a 16th-century house, Mason Croft,
which is now the Shakespeare Institute of the University of
Birmingham. She published a pamphlet to encourage British people to
visit Stratford-on-Avon.?

Victorian Web

Corelli never married. She settled with her devoted, lifelong friend,
Bertha Vyver in Stratford-upon-Avon,
The Literary Encyclopedia


Oprah Winfrey has never been married.

?Oprah Winfrey said the reason she never married and had children was
so that she could work with the "world's children," in an interview
with TV Guide.? (..) "I went to Africa to create the best Christmas
possible for kids who'd never had one," she said. "And the joy in that
room was so thick you physically feel it. In that moment, it hit me.
Now I see why I am not married. Now I see why I never had children. I
am supposed to work with these children."

UPI NewsTrack Entertainment News: September 2003


Helen Keller 

Helen Keller  was the world-famous deaf-blind writer and essayist. She
wrote many books, among them the famous, "The Story of My Life," which
was her autobiography.
- She graduated from Radcliffe College. 
- She was the first deaf-blind person ever to graduate from college.
- She was also an advocate for the blind and the deaf-blind.


?She never married, and this was, of course, one of the tragedies of
her life. She said once that, `If I could see and hear, I would marry
first of all.?


Anna M. Jarvis (1864-1948) 

?Anna Jarvis is considered the real founder of Mother's Day in
America. (..) Although Anna Jarvis never married or became a mother,
she received Mother's Day cards from around the world year after year.
Prior to her death in 1948, there were over forty countries
celebrating Mother's Day.?


Gloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem has one of feminism's most prominent and outspoken
proponents, has never married.

Hall Biography


Jodie Foster 

Jodie Foster, actress, director and double Oscar winner has never married.



Virginia Grey

Virginia Grey, actress was never married.

Yahoo Movies



Search criteria:
"Famous women? "never married"
"Famous females? "never married"
"Never got married"

I hope you find this information helpful!

Best regards,

Clarification of Answer by bobbie7-ga on 26 Mar 2004 05:17 PST
I apologize for including Gloria Steinem in this list. At the age of
66 she got married for the first time.

Clarification of Answer by bobbie7-ga on 26 Mar 2004 05:59 PST
Here are a few more examples of famous women that never married.


Emily Dickinson

Emily Dickinson was born on December 10, 1830 in Amherst,
Massachusetts. She is recognized as one of the greatest American poets
of the 19th century. Dickinson never married.


Clarissa Harlowe Barton

?American administrator who did battlefield relief work during the
Civil War and organized the American Red Cross (1881).?


Clarissa Harlowe Barton (Clara), ?never married and was successively a
school teacher, clerk, battlefield heroine, lecturer, organizer, and


Ellen Glasgow 

Pulitzer Prize-winning US novelist

?Although involved in several passionate romances with men, Glasgow
never married. She suffered heart trouble in her late 60s and did not
live to see her work win the 1942 Pulitzer Prize.?


Clarification of Answer by bobbie7-ga on 26 Mar 2004 11:28 PST
Here are additional famous women who never married. (Very special
thanks to my fellow researcher, tutuzdad-ga who has kindly pointed out
these examples)

Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu (?Mother Teresa?)

Christina Georgina Rossetti ? poet and sister of Novelist Dante Gabriel Rossetti
?She was a devout Anglican who never married.?

Henrietta Szold
During the 1930s, Szold involved Hadassah in a program to rescue
Jewish youth from Germany, and later from all of Europe. It is
estimated that the program she created, "Youth Aliyah," saved some
22,000 Jewish children from Hitler's concentration camps.
The personal tragedy of Szold's life was that she never married; this
woman, whose life was devoted to saving the lives of children, never
had children of her own.

atherine Hutton
Born 11th February 1756, Catherine was the only daughter of William
Hutton (1723-1815) poet and seventeenth century topographer of
Birmingham. Catherine was a writer with many literary connections. She
wrote a memoir of Robert Bage (1730-1801), the eighteenth century
novelist, for Sir Walter Scott, in the series of works published as
Ballantyne's "Novelist's Library."??she never married?.

Isabel Wilder (1900-1995), author and sister of famous writer, Thornton Wilder
?Thornton's sister Isabel Wilder (1900-1995) attended some thirteen
schools by the time she was twenty. As a result she never attended
college. She was, however, a member of the first graduating class of
the Yale School of Drama (1928) and wrote three successful novels in
the 1930s. She never married. Of all the Wilder family members, Isabel
was closest to Thornton, remaining his personal agent, spokesperson,
hostess and representative in this country and abroad.?

Rachel Carson, author of ?Silent Spring?, and considered the
"fountainhead" of the new environmental movement.
?Although she never married, Carson enjoyed strong friendships and the
peace she found in her cabin on the coast of Maine. She drew upon a
reserve of calm assurance that she was indeed doing what had to be
done, and that she was fulfilling her destiny as a writer.?

Louisa Maertz
?Louisa Maertz, 1837-1918, was born in Quincy and lived most of her
life in this city. She was considered to be of a "delicate
constitution" and yet managed to work in the field hospitals of the
Civil War and to travel extensively. She never married and devoted her
life to writing and philanthropy.?

Hypatia (370 AD ? 417 AD) ? ancient mathematician
?Hypatia became a brilliant public speaker and scholar, and she
followed her father on the library's faculty. There she wrote on
mathematics and astronomy. She did work on algebraic equations and
conic sections. She invented the astrolabe for ship navigation and
devices for measuring the density of fluids. She was linked with
several men, but she never married. She was too much the strong-minded
public figure for that.?

Joan Sims ? actress
?As the slightly plump and cheerful star of 24 "Carry On" British film
comedies, Joan Sims made the transformation from man-hungry sexpot to
nagging, dragon-like wife. One of half-a-dozen regulars over 20 years
in the series of bawdy romps, which relied for their humour on
innuendo and double entendre, she became a screen institution? Sims
lived alone for most of her life (she never married)??

Beulah Bondi ? actress
?She was most often seen in the role of a mother of the star of the
film. Of slight stature, with a gaunt, pale looking face, dark hair
and deep-set, penetrating eyes, she was a veteran actress who worked
well into her 80s. Born Beulah Bondy in Chicago, Illinois on May 3,
1888, she began her acting career on the stage at age 7 moving to film
in the 1930s. She was one of the more recognizable faces in films and
is probably best remembered for her role as Mrs. Bailey, the mother of
George Bailey, in "It's A Wonderful Life" (1946)...As often as she
played the ideal mother in films, she never married in real life.?

Francine York ? actress
?Often playing a sexy villainess or beautiful heroine, she appeared in
dozens of '60s movies and TV shows, and by the end of the millennium
her credits numbered almost 100?She's never married.?

Lillian Gish ? actress
?Although she was pursued for more than a decade by critic George Jean
Nathan, and had many other admirers, Gish never married.?

Alice Nunn ? actress
?Alice Nunn was born to be an actress with that wonderful cherubic
face that she could transform into a devilish grimace with ease. She
was a woman of hefty stature and medium height with a very expressive
chubby face, bulgy eyes, brunette hair and husky voice. She was most
often cast as a nurse, a maid, a camp counselor or other care-giver
type roles. Ironically, one of her most memorable roles was as a
tough, female truck driver in ?Pee-Wee?s Great Adventure?She never
married and had a lifelong partner named Martha Harris.?

Diane Keaton ? actress
?Asked if there's a reason she never married, Keaton puts the blame on
herself. "The problem was maybe I wasn't right. I wasn't really
prepared to be a reasonable person."

Maude Adams ? actress (?Portia? in The Merchant of Venice (1931) and
?Maria? in Twelfth Night (1934) and others.
Her insistence on privacy inevitably made her the most publicized
actress in America. She never married.

Pauline Johnson - poet, author, and actress. One of Canada's most
independent and popular personalities at the turn of the century
?The fact that she made a living as an actor was very disconcerting
for her mother and her sister. She was extremely attractive and had
many love affairs, which she kept to herself, and she never married.?

Eva le Gallienne ? actress, producer, director
?She was a gifted actress and early in her life chose the Art of the
Theatre above the Show Business of Broadway for her career,
championing always the subsidised Repertory Theatre as a vehicle for
Drama over the long run of a solitary play. She directed and produced.
Only at the end of her long life did she appear in a few films. Always
a lesbian she never married??

Margaret Lindsay - actress
?Margaret Lindsay was an all-American-looking lead and supporting
actress with a low-pitched voice? Her B-movie experience included
playing the female lead in seven Ellery Queen films. After leaving
Warners she continued to appear mostly in B-movies, and later moved
into character roles. She retired from the screen in 1963, going on to
appear only in The Chadwicks, an unsuccessful 1973 TV pilot with Fred
MacMurray. She never married.?

Kathleeen Freeman ? actress
?The proverbial veteran of stage, screen and television, Ms. Freeman
has had a career spanning more than 50 years?She never married, she
said, "because I don't think anyone would have put up with me," though
she also admits to having had a few love interests who went to war and
"did not come home."

Mary Boland ? actress
?Mary Boland is a hoot as the she's always looking for "l'amour" (in
real life she never married!)?

Charlotte Mew - poet
?She was one of the last poets of the Victorian era. She usually wrote
through an ambigious or male speaker in order to hide her affection
for women. She never married.?

Anna B. Warner ? poet and American hymnwriter.
?She never married, but lived with her sister Susan in New York state.
In 1860, a novel they co-authored contained a poem which became one of
the most beloved of all children's hymns: ?I Know?.?

EDNA PURVIANCE ? actress, co-star of Chaplin movies
?For more than 30 years afterward Edna lived quietly outside
Hollywood. She received a small monthly salary from Chaplin's film
company for the rest of her life. She never married.?

Rosa Bonhour ? artist
?First woman to be awarded the Grand Cross of the Legion d'Honneur in
1865. She was born in Bordeaux and became one of the most noted animal
painters of the 19th century. From an early age she was making
remarkable studies of animals and in 1841 exhibited in the Paris
Salon. From 1842 she exhibited annually and in 1849 took over from her
father as Director of l'Ecole Imperialé de Dessin where her sister
Juliette was also an instructor. She began to dress in men's clothes
so that she could go to the Paris slaughterhouses to observe anatomy
and in 1852 eventually won official police permission to wear male
dress. She never married and for 40 years lived with her friend
Nathalie Micas.?

Louisa May Alcott, Author of Little Women

Clarification of Answer by bobbie7-ga on 26 Mar 2004 12:25 PST
Sorry about the typo.

It should be "Catherine Hutton"
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: probonopublico-ga on 25 Mar 2004 23:03 PST
Joan of Arc
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: czh-ga on 25 Mar 2004 23:30 PST
Gloria Steinem married David Bale in 2000 and was widowed this year.
Feminist icon Gloria Steinem first-time bride at 66
September 5, 2000
David Bale, husband of Gloria Steinem, dies at 62
Friday, January 2, 2004
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: probonopublico-ga on 26 Mar 2004 00:33 PST
And here are a couple of Swedes ...

Queen Kristina

Greta Garbo
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: leli-ga on 26 Mar 2004 01:12 PST
"Florence Nightingale never married, though she had several proposals.
After refusing one offer of marriage from Richard Moncton Milnes, she
confided, ?I have a moral, an active nature which requires
satisfaction and that I would not find in his life. I could be
satisfied to spend a life with him in combining our different powers
to some great object. I could not satisfy this nature by spending a
life with him in making society and arranging domestic things.?"
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: probonopublico-ga on 26 Mar 2004 05:48 PST
Not many are there?

I submit that this proves that, with very few exceptions, every famous
woman NEEDS a husband to show her the way.
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Mar 2004 11:51 PST
I nominate the late, great Kate Hepburn.
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: luciaphile-ga on 26 Mar 2004 12:24 PST
Hepburn did marry. She married one Ludlow Ogden Smith. They later divorced.

Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: pinkfreud-ga on 26 Mar 2004 12:38 PST
Thanks, Luciaphile! I had not known about that. I was basing my
comment on the statement "Ironically, Hepburn never married" in this
obit that I came across last month (while I was trying to answer a
question about a Hepburn quote):

I've got to accept the Ludlow Ogden Smith info that you cited. Nobody
could ever fabricate such a name. :-D
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: luciaphile-ga on 26 Mar 2004 14:53 PST
I had a prior advantage, Pink. I've read "Me" by Hepburn and recalled
an anecdote about her and Jed Harris and how she ended up doing "The
Lake" which was a turkey that haunted Hepburn for a good portion of
her life.

BTW, I think he went by the nickname "Luddy," although I could be mistaken.
Subject: Re: Famous Single Women
From: probonopublico-ga on 28 Mar 2004 00:04 PST
Here's another ...

Maud Allan, 'The Salome Dancer'.

(Not to be confused with Maude Allen, the actress. This happens.)

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