Against All Odds: Pioneering Women at the Smithsonian, 1846-1930

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Career opportunities in science for women were rare in the early years of the Smithsonian Institution; however, pioneers such as Mary Jane Rathbun, Mary Agnes Chase, and Doris Mable Cochran carved out career niches at the Smithsonian despite all obstacles and often with the aid of mentors.


  • Chase, Agnes 1869-1963
  • Cochran, Doris Mable
  • Rathbun, Mary Jane 1860-1943
  • Smithsonian Institution Bureau of American Ethnology
  • National Museum of Natural History (U.S.)
  • United States National Museum


Smithsonian Institution History Bibliography


Copies may be obtained from the Institutional History Division in the Smithsonian Institution Archives.

Contained within

Lecture to Smithsonian Associates, 1993 (Manuscript)

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Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Institution Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20024-2520,


  • Natural history museums
  • Women
  • Smithsonian Institution
  • SI, Early History
  • Anthropology
  • Museums
  • History
  • Anthropological museums and collections
  • Women--History

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