By Edith Leeson Everett
Accession number: 1972.23
Viscountess Astor (1879–1964) was the first woman to take a seat in the British House of Commons. Born in Danville, later she lived in Albemarle County, and in 1901 she married American expatriate Waldorf Astor and moved to England. In 1919 she won the seat in Parliament he had vacated upon being made a lord, and she held it for twenty-six years. Her causes were temperance, women's and children's welfare, and opposition to socialism. She once wrote, "To be a Virginian is a tremendous responsibility. So much is expected of us."