A detective for the NYPD (eventually becoming the fourth woman there to make first-grade detective), Shanley was a frequent subject of contemporary newspapers.
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Mekatilili wa Menza
When colonial powers went too far, she rebelled in the most stylish way possible: dancing from town to town. It was surprisingly effective.
An unbeatable warrior princess who just wanted to have kids - and founded a new nation in her quest to…
Rose from poverty to become a respected journalist who raced Nellie Bly around the world.
This Indonesian queen ruled wisely and justly in life, and was deified as the embodiment of all evil after her death. The story of why gets a bit complicated.
Chaste and virtuous woman spends life assuming she's better than her more sex-positive neighbor, and for this haughtiness becomes in…
When her shogun husband cheated on her, she raised an army and destroyed the other woman's house. Later she deposed her incompetent son to become the first nun to rule Japan.
This princess held her father to his word in the most unexpected way: by demanding to marry the stupidest man in Korea.
An Inuit woman so strong nobody could even beat her lice in arm-wrestling, her story just gets stranger the closer you look.
Possibly the most cartoonishly evil woman to have ever existed, this Merovingian queen was an endless source of assassination attempts - including, on one memorable occasion, her own young daughter.
Joined her sister Hortense Mancini in escaping from an equally abusive marriage, making headlines (and trouble) all across Europe in…