Rohde, Ruth Bryan

Rohde, Ruth Bryan (Owen)

(1885–1954) diplomat, U.S. representative, feminist; born in Jacksonville, Ill. (daughter of William Jennings Bryan). She attended school in Illinois and Nebraska University, but left to marry in 1903. Divorced and remarried, with four children, she supported the family through public speaking after her husband became an invalid. In 1926 she ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. House of Representatives from Florida, then was elected in 1928, the first congresswoman from the deep South (Dem., Fla.; 1929–33). In Congress, she continued to lobby for women's rights. She was appointed a special U.S. ambassador to Denmark and Iceland (1933), the first woman to hold a major diplomatic post. After her marriage to a Dane, she was forced to resign, returning to the U.S.A. to lecture and write. She was an alternate delegate to the United Nations in 1949.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.