Virginia Ellis Jenckes



Virginia Ellis Jenckes was the first woman from Indiana ever elected to the U.S. House of Representatives when she unseated a 16-year veteran Congressman for her position. She was born in Terre Haute, IN in 1877 where she grew up and eventually got married and started a family. But when her husband passed away in 1921, she was left to raise their daughter and tend to their farm all on her own. Through her work on the farm, she began lobbying for flood control resolution which launched her pathway to politics. After winning her congressional race in 1932, she became the first woman to be appointed a U.S. delegate to the Inter-Parliamentary Union in Paris. She retired from Congress in 1939 and campaigned for women running for office in Indiana until she was 92 years old.