Nettie’s research provided critical evidence for chromosomal theories of inheritance and expanded the fields of genetics, cytology, and embryology. Her scientific accomplishments are now inseparably incorporated into the big picture. She is known for illuminating the significance of the (Y) chromosome in sex determination. While others were pursuing the idea that sex determination was the result of environmental factors, Nettie was carefully watching mealworms. Which, she noted, produced two kind of sperm. Each type of sperm possessed a different chromosome, which fertilization would reveal, produced two different results in the sex of offspring. The truth was right in front of the eyes, but it took Nettie to see it, test it, and make it history - although the credit was often misplaced along the way.
When an automobile plowed into Constance’s buggy (turning it into a pile of splinters) she did what anyone would expect, she requested to be compensated for the damages. When the notorious silk factory owner (who drove the automobile into her car) refused to pay up, Constance was not deterred. Despite the man’s use of intimidating tactics including threatening letters and strangers with guns - Constance’s persistence paid off and eventually she was repaid what she was owed. Through this ordeal, Constance found herself possessed of a certain strength of mind, body, and spirit. This same grit made her well suited for the career that she would pioneer. America’s first female Sherif.
As is usually the case, her life is much more colorful and storied than this paragraph gives her credit for. But uniquely, her life has inspired a tremendously well written series of novels by Amy Stewart. In this fictionalized series you can learn more about Constance, her family, and the context of spirited women trying to thrive in that time period. I highly recommend you check them out!
“Little Sure Shot” Annie, was trapping at 7 years old and hunting with a gun at age 8 to support her widowed mother and siblings through poverty. At 15, Annie won a shooting match with sharp-shooter, Frank Butler, whom she married a year later. They joined Buffalo Bill’s Wild West together and Annie kept her audience on the edge of their seat with her gun - easily hitting a dime tossed into the air or a cigarette from her husband’s lips. President McKinley made the mistake of rejecting her offer of “a woman sharpshooter service” for the war. Annie went on to teach more than 15,000 women how to use a gun, influencing not only the image of the American cowgirl, but empowering women with the opportunity to prove themselves every bit as capable as men.