The first female Marine
Richard pod is sponsored by T. Rowe price. Are you looking to learn a thing or two about getting your finances in order saving and investing? Check out the confident wallet a personal finance podcast series by T. Rowe price and the Washington Post brand studio find it wherever you get your podcasts. Hey history lovers. I'm Mike Rosen walled with retro pod. A show about the past rediscovered. This is a story of a marine the first female Marie her name offer may John it was close to the end of World War One when the Marine Corps decided to fill some of the gaps left behind by all the men fighting overseas. In one thousand nine hundred nine Johnson was one of three hundred women who showed up to take one of those jobs. Women weren't even allowed to vote at the time. Johnson was born in Kokomo, Indiana, and she was a rapid fire typist. She was working in the Interstate Commerce Commission when the marines issued that call for help Johnson was literally the first one in line. She took a job clerking at the Marine Corps headquarters in Arlington. Even though they were clerks the women have the train and drill. Just like other marines. You'll sergeants made their displeasure clear calling the women marinates. That's according to Linda l Hewitt's book women marines in World War One. The female marines were not amused by the nickname in a letter included in Hewitt's book, one of the female marines wrote, isn't it funny. The minute a girl becomes irregular fellow. Somebody always tries to quit by calling her something else. She added. Well, anybody that calls me anything, but marine is going to hear from me. The women were all in. But their time in the marines was brief after the end of World War One all of the military branches began disin- rolling the women who signed up. Johnson was let go in nineteen nineteen she stayed in the Washington area and was active in the first American Legion post dedicated to women for decades, she met with new veterans supporting women as their roles brew more prominent in the military. She live long enough to see women raising the colors at the marine barracks to see captain and lengths become the first female commissioned officer to see staff sergeant Barbara olive Barnwell become the first female marine to be awarded the navy and Marine Corps medal for heroism today, the marines make no distinction between men and women in the recruiting materials. They simply say becoming an enlisted marine requires the ability to meet the highest standards of moral mental and physical strength. When the Johnson who was very thirty seven years to the day when she made Marine Corps history by signing on that dotted line. I'm Mike Rosen Rosenwasser, thanks for listening special. Thanks to Petur divorce for reported the store for the Washington Post and for more forgotten stories from history. Visit Washington Post dot com slash retro pod.