Nelly Bly (Elizabeth Cochrane Seaman) (1865-1922)
Nellie Bly decided she would boldly challenge Jules Verne’s fictional character, Phileas Fogg, and beat his infamous record of, Around the World in Eighty Days. She left for her journey by boat from New Jersey and returned by rail into New York City; beating the record by arriving in seventy-two days, six hours, eleven minutes and fourteen seconds. She simultaneously became the first woman to circle the world alone (using various modes of commercial transportation). A career journalist, Bly bravely reported, and exposed, the appalling conditions of jails, insane asylums and sweatshops. She wrote one book, Ten Days in a Mad-House.