Historical Women of Color in Science

A Reference List

As with the historical women in science reference list, this list cannot hope to be comprehensive. However, having failed to find a list of this type elsewhere, I wanted to share my research with you.  If there is a scientist you would like to see added to this list, please consider sending us a message or submit a profile! You can read more about this reference list on my original blog post at Medium.com.



Zelia Nuttal (1857–1993), México

Bertha Parker Pallan Cody (1907–1978), Native American, US

Astronomy and Astrophysics

En’Hedu’Anna (23rd century BCE), Babylonian Empire [1][2]

Ban Zhao (2nd century CE), China

Al-ijliya Al-astrulabi (10th century CE), Syria

Fatima de Madrid (10th century CE), Islamic Spain

Wang Zhen Yi (1768–1797), China

Paris Pishmish de Recillas (1911–1999), Turkey, US, Mexico [1]

Ālenush Teriān (1920–2011), Iran-Armenia

Carme Adelina Gutiérrez Alonso (1925–2015), Chile


Janaki Ammal (1887–1984), India [1] [2]

Ynes Mexia (1870–1938), US- México

Maria Sabina (1894-1985), Mexico [1]

Helia Bravos Hollis (1901–2001), México

Luisa Eugenia Navas Bustamante (1918 — ); Chile

Biology, Biochemistry

Maharani Chakravorty (1947–2015); India

Kamala Sohonie (1912–1998), India [1][2][3]


Alice Augusta Ball (1892–1916); African American [1][2][3]

Asima Chatterjee (1917–2006) India [1][2]

Marie Maynard Daly (1921–1993) US, African-American [1][2]

Ruby Hirose (1904–1960). Bacteriology & biochemistry. US, Chinese-American [1][2]


Mary Golda Ross (1908–2008); aerospace engineer, Cherokee

Mary Jackson (1921–2005). NASA engineer, US, African American


Sutaya Al-Mahmali (10th Century), [1] [2][3]

Lubna of Córdoba (10th Century), [1] [2]

María Andrea Casamayor y de la Coma (1700(?)–1780), Spain [1][2]

Martha Euphemia Lofton Haynes (1900–1980) US, African American

Marjorie Lee Browne (1914–1979), US, African American

Maryam Mirzakhani (1977–2011), Iran


Merit Ptah (3rd century BCE)

Gevher Nesibe (13th century)

Rufaida Al-Aslamia (7th-century), Saudi Arabia.

Jang geum (15th century), Royal Physician, Korea

Tan Yunxian (16th century), China. Medicine.

Mary Seacole (1805–1881) Army Nurse, US, Jamaican-British

Rebecca Lee Crumpler (1831–1895) first African American woman to earn a medical degree in the US

Felicitas Provencio (1850~1940), Mexico [1]

Anna Galvis Hotz (1855–1934) Gynecology, Columbia

Kadambini Ganguly (1861–1923) [1][2][3]

Rakhmabi Bhikaji (1864–1955); Doctor & Woman’s rights activist, India

Anandibai Joshi (1865–1887); India

Susan La Flesche Picotte (1865–1915), Omaha Tribe, US [1][2][3][4]

Teresa Urrea (1873-1906), México. Healer.

May Edward Chinn (1896–1980); US, Chickahominy and African American

Hilena Sedarous (1904–1998) Egypt

Nise da Silveira (1905–1999)

Azar Andami (1936–1984), Physician & Bacteriologist, Iran

Đặng Thùy Trâm (1942–1970), Vietnam


Chien-Shiung Wu (1912–1997), Experimental nuclear physics, Chinese-American

Sameera Moussa (1917–1952), Nuclear physics, Egyptian

Maggie Gee (1923–2013), Chinese American


Dorothy Vaughan (1910–2008). NASA Computer Scientist, US, African American

Annie Easley (1933 — 2011), NASA computer scientist & Mathematician, US, African-American


Roger Arliner Young (1889–1964); USA