Key Dates for “Potty Parity” and Gender Representation In Congress

1917 – Jeannette Rankin of Montana became the first woman to serve in Congress.

1922 – Rebecca Felton of Georgia became the first woman to serve in the U.S. Senate.

1962 – The first women’s restroom is installed on the first floor of the Capitol.

1962 – H-235 was designated a powder room and lounge for female members. However, there still was no female bathroom outside of the House or Senate floor. 

1965 – A “Ladies Health Facility” was established for female members. This room was much smaller than the two-floor men’s-only gym in the Rayburn House Office Building that also had a pool.

1992 – More women are elected to Congress than ever before in what becomes known as “Year of the Woman.”

1992 – Majority leader George Mitchell (D) of Maine requests the construction of a women’s restroom just off the Senate floor.

1993 – A women’s restroom is constructed next to the Senate floor.

2000 – Three additional stalls were added to the Senate women’s restroom.

2011 – A women’s restroom is added next to the House chamber. Until then, women only had access to a restroom inside the women’s lounge. 

2013 – The House women’s restroom had to be doubled in size to respond to the increase in elected women.

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