Bad Girls Throughout History: 100 Remarkable Women Who Changed the World - Ann Shen (2016)
American journalist Nellie Bly (1864-1922) started her journalism career when she wrote a scathing letter to the editor of the Pittsburgh Dispatch in response to a misogynistic column called “What Girls Are Good For.” The editor was so impressed with her writing that he assigned her a piece for the paper. She soon became a staff member, but rebelled against the puff pieces that women were typically given. Instead, she traveled to Mexico and made herself a foreign correspondent, reporting on the lives and customs of the Mexican people; these articles were published in her first book, Six Months in Mexico. Bly became a household name after she went undercover in a New York insane asylum and wrote an exposé about the inhumane conditions, entitled “Ten Days in a Mad-House.” With her new-won fame, Bly persuaded her boss at the New York World to sponsor her on a trip around the world. She set a record for traveling around the world by completing the journey in seventy-two days, and she did it mostly alone by rail or sea. While on her journey, she visited a leper colony in China and picked up a monkey in Shanghai. Later, she married a millionaire and became an inventor, with two U.S. patents under her belt. All of this before the age of fifty-seven—talk about a go-getter!