VICTORIA WOODHULL 1838 -1927- The National Women’s History Museum
By Mariana Brandman, NWHM Predoctoral Fellow in Women’s History | 2020-2022
The first woman to run for president and the first female stock broker on Wall Street, Victoria Woodhull achieved remarkable success in finance, journalism, and politics. A spiritualist, suffragist, and free love advocate, Woodhull was an iconoclast who fought for her beliefs no matter how controversial they were at the time.
Victoria Woodhull was born in Homer, Ohio on September 23, 1838 to parents Reuben Buckman Claflin and Roxanna Hummel. Woodhull’s childhood was a turbulent one: she received only three years of inconsistent schooling at Homer’s Methodist Church school before her family was forced to leave town under the suspicion that her father had purposefully burned down the mill he owned for the insurance payout. She then spent her early years taking part in her family’s traveling medicine show, telling fortunes and selling homemade medicines. FOR MORE
Picture credit: Women in Finance, The Daily Pioneer