Blackwell, Antoinette Louisa Brown

Blackwell, Antoinette Louisa Brown

(1825–1921) Congregational minister, author, feminist; born in Henrietta, N.Y. Inspired by evangelical revivals, she enrolled at Oberlin College, eventually studying theology, but as a woman was barred from a theology degree. After lecturing on women's rights and occasionally preaching at progressive churches, she was allowed ordination by the First Congregational Church (1853), becoming the first woman minister in an established Protestant denomination, but she soon resigned to become a Unitarian. Married in 1854, she raised a large family but also taught and wrote, especially on behalf of women's rights. From 1908 to 1915 she was pastor of a Unitarian church in New Jersey.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.