Maria Montessori (1870 – 1952) opened the first Montessori school in Rome, Italy on January 6, 1907.  Called Casa dei Bambini, the school enrolled 50 to 60 children between the ages of 2 or 3 and 6 or 7.  Montessori oversaw and observed the classroom but did none of the teaching.  Based upon her observations, Montessori implemented many of the practices that became the hallmarks of her approach.   Montessori was born in Chiaravalle, Italy, but grew up in Florence, then Rome.  She graduated from a technical institute at the age of 20 with a certificate in physics-mathematics.   She then talked her way into the University of Rome where she earned a degree in natural sciences.  She entered medical school in 1893.  She faced hostility from many of her professors and fellow medical students because of her gender.  She was not able to dissect cadavers with the male students, and had to do that part of her coursework alone at night, because it was deemed inappropriate for her to be in the presence of the males students with a naked body in the same room.  Montessori graduated with a doctorate in medicine from the University of Rome in 1896, having specialized in pediatrics and psychiatry.  Prior to opening her first Montessori school she worked primarily with children with mental disabilities.  With the success of the Montessori “method” she travelled widely teaching her educational philosophy.  She was nominated for the Nobel Prize three times.  Montessori died or a cerebral hemorrhage in 1952 at the age of 81.

First U.S. Women’s 6 day bike race started in Madison Square Garden on January 6, 1896.

Barbara Hanley became Canada’s first woman mayor on January 6, 1936 (mayor of Webbwood, Ontario).



Joan of Arc (1412 – 1431) (Legendary birthdate is January 6, 1412).  She is a national heroine of France and a Roman Catholic Saint.

Melchora Aquino de Ramos (1812 – 1919).  A Filipina revolutionary who became known as “Tandang Sora” (“Elder Sora”) because of her advanced age (84) when the Philippine Revolution broke out.  She is also known as the “Grand Woman of the Revolution”.  Aquino operated a store in her native town, and it was there that secret meeting of the revolutionaries were held.  She also fed and gave medical care to the revolutionaries, and the store became a refuge.   When the Spaniards found out about her activities and learned that she knew the whereabouts of the revolutionaries they interrogated her; when she refused to give them information she was arrested and deported to Guam.  When the United States intervened and took control of the Philippines in 1898 Aquino returned and remained in the Philippines until her death in 1919 at the age of 107.

Nancy Lopez (1957 –     ).  A professional golfer who joined the the LPGA Tour in 1977, and won 48 LPGA tournament events, including three Majors.  Considered one of the greats in the history of women’s golf, Lopez was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1987.