If you’re female and you drive, you’ve probably rolled your eyes several times at some cheesy “women drivers” jokes from jerks throughout the years.
There’s an idea (a wrong one) that women and cars don’t mix, but in fact, women have always been involved in automobiles.
The first long-distance driver of a car was Bertha Benz, wife of German automobile inventor Karl Benz.
Not only did she finance much of his invention, but in 1888, at the age of 39, she drove 66 miles, becoming the first person to cover significant distance in a car, and helped make adjustments to make cars run safer and smoother.
When cars became really popular in the early 1900s, they were a symbol of invention, progress, and freedom — all things they still symbolize today. People could travel more easily, and just like today, a new car was a major purchase and one to be proud of.
In the 1920s, women across the country posed for photos with their cars. The photos are charming and capture the days of the very first road trips, gorgeous vintage fashion, and, of course, some fascinating old cars.
But they also show us how the roles of women were changing in society, as they became more independent, and gained more and more rights.
Today, we still have issues that affect women, such as the constant, tiresome pressure to look a certain, often unrealistic way. These photos show us not only how far we’ve come, but also remind us to celebrate the ladies who made the first strides.