A Woman to Know: Sheila Michaels

Wow, wonderful. 'Ms.' is me! — Sheila Michaels

(image via Wikimedia)


People had been using the honorific 'Ms.' since the early 1900s, but it was Sheila — a civil rights activist, feminist writer, restauranteur and later, even a taxi driver — who brought the honorific to prominence in the 1960s.

In a passionate radio interview, she first suggested her fellow women activists adopt 'Ms.' as a symbol of respect for themselves. From there, it grew in popularity, even ending up the title of Gloria Steinem's famous feminist magazine.

"I think it was this powerful feeling that I didn't want to be any man's piece of property," she told a reporter . years later.

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