1159: Martine Bertereau, Baroness de Beau Soleil

Mining Engineer and Mineralogist

Born: c.1602, Possibly Touraine, France

Died: c.1642, Vincennes, France

The Baroness traveled Europe extensively in search of mineral deposits and fresh groundwater sources at the behest of various nobles and members of different European royal families.

She was possibly the first female geologist and mining engineer in world history and worked alongside her husband who was also a geologist and engineer. According to Wikipedia, the pair had multiple children but only information on two of them survive to present-day.

Martine published two reports on her and her husband’s finds, in 1632 and 1640.

The baroness and her husband founded a mining company that used dowsing to search out mineral deposits. Her and her husband were charged with sorcery for using witchcraft by the church and died in prison.

Very little other information on Martine has survived, and as I mentioned Wikipedia is one of the only sources readily available on the internet.