International Women’s Day timeline

100 years of history

March 8, 1857:
Hundreds of New York City women took 
to the streets to protest 
inhumane working conditions and substandard wages in 
New York 
City’s textile and garment 

March 8, 1908:
15,000 women marched in the streets of New York 
City, seeking better pay, shorter working hours, women’s 
suffrage and the end of 
child labor.

May, 1908:
The Socialist Party of America declared that National Women’s Day would be 
celebrated on the last Sunday in February. 
It was observed on that day through 1913.

An international socialist conference in Copenhagen, including more than 100 women from 17 countries, 
unanimously decided to establish an International Women’s Day to mark the original garment workers’ strike and to draw attention to women’s suffrage movement.

March 19, 1911:
The 1st official IWD event!
Over 1 million men and women attended the first official International Women’s Day rallies in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland, in support of the rights of women to work and gain vocational training and to vote and hold public office.

February 23, 1913:

Russian women celebrated International Women’s Day for the first time as part of the pre-World War I peace movement.

March 8-11, 1914:
Russian women struck for “bread and peace,” part of the “February Revolution,” protesting the deaths of 2+ million Russian men in World War I. On March 11, Czar Nicholas abdicated and women gained the right to vote.

March 8, 1975:
As part of International Women’s Year, the United Nations began to celebrate International Women’s Day.

March 8, 1977:
The United Nations 
formally adopted a resolution declaring March 8 to be “United Nations Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace.”

March 8, 1989:
KFAI Radio, Minneapolis, began an annual tradition of devoting 24 hours of programming to women in celebration of International Women’s Day.

March 8, 1995:
The Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights began its first annual daylong celebration of International Women’s Day, continuing the tradition through 2010.