Historical Heroines

Heroines of the past who were active at some point between the late 18th century and the mid-20th century.

From Alice to Yva, explore the archive of Historical Heroines and learn about the rich lives and careers of pioneering women photographers. As we continue our mission, our online archives will continue grow.

Researched, written and curated by our volunteers. If you would like to contribute to this valuable resource, sign up to volunteer today.

Sort By 
  • Date
  • Title

Harriet Tytler

A true pioneer of photographic practices in the 1800s, she created over 300 photographs in collaboration with her husband....

Helen Levitt

One of America’s foremost street photographers, Helen Levitt captured the energy of the streets of Spanish Harlem, Brooklyn and the Bronx through her candid, quirkily framed shots of children at play....

Hou Bo

Chinese photojournalist Hou Bo (1924 – 2017) documented the rise of Mao Zedong from 1939 to 1968 in over 400 photographs as the official photographer of The Great Leader. She created most of the iconic images of Mao’s reign but fell...

Ida Kar

Ida Kar

Ida Kar was a woman of many origins who became most well-known for her portraits of London artistic circles, becoming the ‘Bohemian Photographer’....

Isle Bing

Ilse Bing

Ilse Bing (1899–1998) was a German-born inter-war photographer who worked in photojournalism and portraiture in Paris and New York. She worked in the modernist style and innovated using solarisation and night photography. Her work was...

Julia Diament Pirotte

Polish photojournalist Julia Diament Pirotte (1908 –2000) is known for her work in Marseille during the Second World War, when she documented the French Resistance and life under the occupation from 1940-1945....

Karimeh Abbud

Palestinian photographer, born in Bethlehem, later moved to Jerusalem, and died in Nazareth.She was unknown to historians or photographers, until 2007....

Help support our work by texting 100H to 70085 to donate £5. Texts cost £5 plus one standard rate message. Thank you!