Official State Heroine of Massachusetts
Massachusetts designated Deborah Samson Gannett as the official state heroine in 1983. She made a unique contribution to American independence, and was the first woman to be awarded a military pension. All State Awards - Historic & Iconic People
Deborah Samson Gannett Day
Massachusetts observes each May 23 as an anniversary commemorating Deborah Samson Gannett's enlistment in the Continental Army. All State Holidays
Deborah Samson Gannett fought in the American Revolution as Robert Shurtleff (also spelled “Shurtliff” or “Shurtlieff”). She was recognized for outstanding service before she was wounded in battle (at which point her masquerade was discovered).
Several other individuals are recognized as official symbols of Massachusetts: Ben Franklin (state inventor), Dr. Seuss (state children's author), Norman Rockwell (state artist), Johnny Appleseed (state folk hero), and Taj Mahal (state Blues artist).