Landmark Ladies: Women and the Supreme Court

by  Preservation Virginia

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Which legal precedents once limited womens' equality and treatment under the law from Chief Justice John Marshall's lifetime in the Early Republic to present? What journey has taken place in the United States to progress womens' access to and equality within the male-dominated legal sphere, and what progress is still left to accomplish? This program will explore both the trailblazers, and the trailblazing moments for women in politics and law. Additionally, we will unpack several court decisions that have impacted American women and review the significance of each of the six women who have served on the highest court in the land--a bench Chief Justice John Marshall never envisioned them occupying.

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About This Program


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40 minutes

Target Audience

Education: Grade(s) 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Teacher(s)/Educator(s), Parent, Adult Learners, Homeschool/Family , Learning PodPublic Library: Library Patrons, Library Staff

Minimum participants:


Maximum participants:


Primary Disciplines

Social Studies/History

Program Delivery Mode

Videoconference – Webcam/desktop (Zoom, Google Meet, Cisco WebEx, GoToMeeting, Microsoft Teams, etc...)

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You must cancel 48 hours in advance in order to be refunded.

About This Provider

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Preservation Virginia

Richmond, VA
United States

Founded in 1889, Preservation Virginia is the country's oldest statewide historic preservation group. In addition to engaging in extensive advocacy work and helping preserve historic structures and places across the Commonwealth, Preservation Virginia also owns, operates, and interprets six historic sites across the state. These historic sites include Historic Jamestowne (1609, Jamestown), Bacon's Castle (1665, Surry), Patrick Henry's Scotchtown (1719, Hanover), Smith's Fort Plantation (1763, Surry), John Marshall House (1790, Richmond), and Cape Henry Lighthouse (1791, Virginia Beach). Visit our website to learn more about our preservation efforts, visiting our historic sites, and more! 

Meika Downey

Program Details


Using Preservation Virginia's historic site, John Marshall House, as a lens, this program will use visual aids, primary sources, and Q&A to stimulate active and critical thinking, source analysis, and connecting past to present.

35-40 minute presentation


Participants will understand the law and politics limiting women's participation as lawyers and jurists that shaped much of American society, and then consider the trailblazing women who helped bring about progress.

Participants will consider the fact that the Great Chief Justice, John Marshall, who helped form and formalize the Supreme Court, never considered women serving in the federal judiciary, and yet, so many landmark moments came from American women.