Women Inventors & Discoverers

Throughout history, there have been many women inventors & discoverers who have made significant contribution to the field. The list includes many familiar and great female inventors & discoverers such as Hedy Lamarr, Katharine Burr Blodgett, Edith Clarke, Beulah Louise Henry, Mary Walton.The women inventors & discoverers featured in this list are from United States, United Kingdom, Canada & Australia and many more countries.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Grace Hopper

Grace Hopper
7
Famous As: Computer Scientist
Birthdate: December 9, 1906
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York, New York, United States
Died: January 1, 1992
Computer scientist and U.S. Navy rear admiral Grace Hopper was one of the first programmers of the Harvard Mark I computing system. She pioneered the machine-independent programming language technique, and the FLOW-MATIC language used by her was later used to create COBOL. She received a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom.

 2 Hedy Lamarr

Hedy Lamarr
7
Famous As: Actress, Inventor
Birthdate: November 9, 1914
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Vienna, Austria
Died: January 19, 2000

Hedy Lamarr was an Austrian-American actress whose early career was defined by her performance in the controversial Czech erotic film Ecstasy. Apart from gaining popularity as a beautiful Hollywood actress, Hedy Lamarr became known as an inventor after co-inventing frequency-hopping spread spectrum. Her career has inspired several works of art. She was also the inspiration behind the iconic character Catwoman.

 3 Joy Mangano

Joy Mangano
5
Famous As: Inventor, Entrepreneur
Birthdate: February 1, 1956
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: East Meadow, New York, United States

Before she turned her peculiar inventions into a billion-dollar business empire, Joy Mangano had worked as an airline assistant and a waitress. Her best-known invention has been the Miracle Mop, a self-wringing mop made of plastic. She has also penned a memoir and has inspired the 2015 film Joy.

 4 Virginia Apgar

Virginia Apgar
4
Famous As: Physician and Anesthesiologist
Birthdate: June 7, 1909
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Westfield, New Jersey, United States
Died: August 7, 1974

 5 Simone Giertz

Simone Giertz
5
Famous As: Inventor, YouTuber
Birthdate: November 1, 1990
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Stockholm, Sweden

Simone Giertz is a Swedish TV host, YouTuber and robotics enthusiast. She is best known for creating mechanical robots to automate everyday tasks, the videos of which she posts on her YouTube channel. Simone Giertz displayed many of her robots on the popular TV show, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.

 6 Lori Greiner

Lori Greiner
22
Famous As: Television personality
Birthdate: December 9, 1969
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

 7 Ruth Handler

Ruth Handler
3
Famous As: Businesswoman
Birthdate: November 4, 1916
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Denver, Colorado, United States
Died: April 27, 2002
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 8 Bette Nesmith Graham

Bette Nesmith Graham
3
Famous As: Inventor, Entrepreneur
Birthdate: March 23, 1924
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Dallas
Died: May 12, 1980

 9 Ruth Graves Wakefield

Ruth Graves Wakefield
3
Famous As: Chef, Patent inventor, Teacher, Businessperson, Food critic, Dietitian
Birthdate: June 17, 1903
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Walpole
Died: January 10, 1977

 10 Stephanie Kwolek

Stephanie Kwolek
3
Famous As: Chemist
Birthdate: July 31, 1923
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: New Kensington, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: June 18, 2014

Stephanie Kwolek was an American chemist remembered for her invention of Kevlar. She worked at the DuPont Company for over four decades and was awarded the company's Lavoisier Medal for her discovery. In 1995, she was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame, becoming the fourth woman to be inducted. She also won other awards including the Perkin Medal.

 11 Patricia Bath

Patricia Bath
3
Famous As: Former Inventor known for Invention of Laserphaco Probe
Birthdate: November 4, 1942
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: April 30, 2019

Ophthalmologist Patricia Bath is remembered for her pathbreaking invention of the Laserphaco Probe, which made laser cataract surgery possible. The first Black female surgeon at the UCLA Medical Center and the first female faculty staff of the UCLA Jules Stein Eye Institute, she dedicated her life to curing blindness.

 12 Sarah E. Goode

Sarah E. Goode
3
Famous As: Inventor
Birthdate: 1855 AD
Birthplace: Toledo, Ohio, United States
Died: April 8, 1905

 13 Mary Anderson

Mary Anderson
3
Famous As: inventor
Birthdate: February 19, 1866
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Greene County
Died: June 27, 1953

Mary Anderson was a real estate developer, rancher, and inventor. She is best known for inventing the windshield wiper blade. She received her first patent for an automatic car window cleaning device controlled from inside the car in 1903. She was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2011, more than half a century after her death.  

 14 Gertrude B. Elion

Gertrude B. Elion
3
Famous As: Biochemist, Pharmacologist
Birthdate: January 23, 1918
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States
Died: February 21, 1999

The daughter of Jewish immigrants in New York, Gertrude B. Elion excelled in chemistry at Hunter College, where she studied for free, but was initially unable to find a job due to gender bias. The renowned biochemist and pharmacologist later won a Nobel and became a pioneer in medical research.

 15 Caresse Crosby

Caresse Crosby
3
Famous As: Publisher, Writer, Socialite, Poet, Memoirist, Journalist
Birthdate: April 20, 1891
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: New York City
Died: January 26, 1970

 16 Elizabeth Holloway Marston

Elizabeth Holloway Marston
0
Famous As: Psychologist
Birthdate: February 20, 1893
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Isle of Man
Died: March 27, 1993

 17 Margaret E. Knight

Margaret E. Knight
3
Famous As: Inventor, notably of a machine to produce flat-bottomed paper bags
Birthdate: February 14, 1838
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: York, Maine, United States
Died: October 12, 1914

 18 Josephine Cochrane

Josephine Cochrane
5
Famous As: inventor
Birthdate: March 8, 1839
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Ashtabula County
Died: August 3, 1913

 19 Sarah Boone

Sarah Boone
3
Famous As: Inventor
Birthdate: January 31, 1832
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Craven County, North Carolina
Died: 1904 AD

 20 Radia Perlman

Radia Perlman
3
Famous As: Computer Network Engineer
Birthdate: December 18, 1951
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Portsmouth, Virginia, United States

 21 Izumo no Okuni

Izumo no Okuni
2
Famous As: Inventor
Birthdate: 1572 AD
Birthplace: Izumo Province, Japan
Died: November 30, 1613

 22 Edith Clarke

Edith Clarke
2
Famous As: Electrical Engineer
Birthdate: February 10, 1883
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Howard County
Died: October 29, 1959

 23 Hertha Ayrton

Hertha Ayrton
2
Famous As: Engineer
Birthdate: April 28, 1854
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Portsea Island, England
Died: August 26, 1923

Hertha Ayrton was a British engineer,  physicist, mathematician, and inventor. She is remembered for her work on electric arcs and ripple marks in sand and water, for which she was awarded the Hughes Medal by the Royal Society. As a woman in the 19th century, she had to face innumerable struggles in her career. She was also a passionate suffragist. 

 24 Lyda D. Newman

Lyda D. Newman
2
Famous As: Inventor and involved activist for women's suffrage
Birthdate: 1885 AD
Birthplace: Ohio, United States

 25 Katharine Burr Blodgett

Katharine Burr Blodgett
2
Famous As: Scientist
Birthdate: January 10, 1898
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Schenectady
Died: October 12, 1979

 26 Beulah Louise Henry

Beulah Louise Henry
1
Famous As: Lady Edison
Birthdate: February 11, 1887
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Raleigh
Died: 1973 AD

 27 Eleanor Coade

Eleanor Coade
1
Famous As: Businesswoman
Birthdate: June 3, 1733
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Exeter, Devon, England
Died: November 16, 1821

Eleanor Coade was a British businesswoman known for her astute entrepreneurial, business, and marketing skills. She manufactured Neoclassical statues, architectural decorations, and garden ornaments. She created stoneware for many famous buildings, including St George's Chapel, The Royal Pavilion, Brighton, and Carlton House. She was one of the few women to run a highly successful business in the Georgian era. 

 28 Mary Walton

Mary Walton
2
Famous As: Inventor
Birthdate: 1827 AD
Birthplace: New York City, United States of America

 29 Jeanne Villepreux-Power

Jeanne Villepreux-Power
1
Famous As: Biologist
Birthdate: September 24, 1794
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Juillac, France
Died: January 25, 1871

 30 Danièle Aron-Rosa

Danièle Aron-Rosa
1
Famous As: Painter, Ophthalmologist
Birthdate: October 15, 1934
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Tunis, Tunisia

 31 Olive Dennis

Olive Dennis
1
Famous As: Civil Engineer
Birthdate: November 20, 1885
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: United States of America
Died: November 5, 1957

Olive Dennis was an American engineer whose innovations played a huge role in making railways what it is today. The first female member to become a part of the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA), Olive Dennis is credited with introducing comforts, such as stain-resistant upholstery, ceiling lights, and air-conditioned compartments in passenger cars.  

 32 Carleen Hutchins

Carleen Hutchins
1
Famous As: Innovator
Birthdate: May 24, 1911
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States
Died: August 7, 2009

 33 Sybilla Righton Masters

Sybilla Righton Masters
0
Famous As: Inventor
Birthdate: 1676 AD
Birthplace: Bermuda
Died: August 23, 1720

 34 Katharina Paulus

Katharina Paulus
0
Famous As: Skydiver, Inventor
Birthdate: December 22, 1868
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Zellhausen, Mainhausen, Germany
Died: July 26, 1935

 35 Cynthia May Alden

Cynthia May Alden
0
Famous As: Journalist
Birthdate: May 31, 1862
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Afton, Iowa, United States
Died: January 8, 1931

 36 Eliza Maria Mosher

Eliza Maria Mosher
0
Famous As: Physician
Birthdate: October 2, 1846
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Cayuga County, New York, United States
Died: October 16, 1928