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First Women’s College Established


Mary Lyon, a chemist, educator and a leader of the movement for girls’ secondary education, founds the Mount Holyoke Female Seminary in South Hadley, Mass., to offer girls from all social and economic backgrounds the opportunity for a college education. The school opens to counteract the prejudices of the era that considered women as less able to learn science, math and other academic subjects. Today, the school continues to operate as Mount Holyoke College, a liberal arts school for women.