Throwback Thursday: 9 Inventions Created by Women

by Madison Nicole Nunes

It’s Throwback Thursday. You’ve probably already posted your Instagram picture (#tbt) and are now anticipating Flashback Friday with a mid-afternoon coffee in hand. 

In honor of the day we (randomly) associate with looking back, here is a list of 9 inventions that were created by ladies. Let me add “badass” to that last statement. 


1.) Grace Hopper

Admiral Grace Marry Hopper joined the military in 1943 ( there’s the “throwback”). She was stationed at Harvard where she began work on the IBM Mark I. Hopper created the complier, a machine that translates the English language into computer coding – you know… all the binary stuff. (P.s. this smarty had 30 degrees ) 

2.) Hedy Lamarr

This star has beauty and brains. Actress Hedy Lamarr received a patent for a frequency-hopping system she had created.  This device used a code to scatter classified messages, which prevented the enemy from intercepting the communications. 

3.) Ada Byron Lovelace

Ada is attributed with creating the first computer code… for a machine that wasn’t even invented yet. Using notes she took while working with Charles Babbage on his early calculating machine, Ada figured out what it would take to make it work. When her notebook was found years later it held ideas for recording and playing music from the (unmade) machine. 

4.) Mary Phelps Jacob 

Victoria’s Secret would not even exist if Mary Phelps Jacob hadn’t invented the “modern” brassier. Her prototype was the first one to ever successfully lift the breasts and (as a bonus) hold them into two distinct shapes.

Try to image a world of only uni-boobs…we dare you to not be impressed by this BUSTie lady. 

5.) Tabitha Babbitt 

Here is for all you DIY babes – Babbitt invented the circular saw and machine-made nails. Crafting would be a lot more difficult if we had to craft our own nails first. 

(Babbitt is so old that cameras hadn’t been invented. Here is a cat gif)

6.) Rachel Zimmerman  

What were you doing when you were twelve? This girl was inventing. Rachel Zimmerman, a twelve-year-old at the time, created the BlissSymbol Printer. BlissSymbol was created for speech impaired individuals. They could click on what were basically emojis, and then the images would be converted into words! Not only did the design work, but it won Rachel the YTV Youth Achievement Award. 


7.) Sarah Boone: 

If you’ve ever tried to get wrinkles out of your clothes via hanging them in the bathroom while you shower then let me introduce you to the ironing board. Sarah Boon, an African American woman, re-imaged the ironing board to make it slimmer. This made it much thinner ( think sleeve width) so your mom could iron your vintage Adidas jacket more easily.

8.) Ellen Ochoa:

Ellen was the first Hispanic female astronaut. She also invented an optical analysis that improved the quality of manufacturing for tiny, intricate items. She’s probably the reason we don’t have spaceships falling out of the sky all the time…

9.) Marie Van Brittan Brown 

If you live anywhere in a city then Brown’s invention has probably saved your life – at least once. This Queens, NY native is responsible for the construction of security cameras – the ones we still use today. The cameras were able to rotate through different peepholes to see different parts of the room as well as automatically lock doors.


Women be inventing like it ain’t no thang…

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