NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - Hillary Clinton is the first woman ever to win a major political party presidential nomination. But she is not the first in history to run for the Oval Office.
More than 200 women have run for the presidency over the course of American history, according to Ellen Fitzpatrick, a history professor and author of "The Highest Glass Ceiling." Most of them are unknown to most Americans, she added.
Clinton's rise to power is historic and relatively quick when you consider that less than 100 years ago, women did not even have the right to vote
Harold Holzer is a presidential historian and director of the Roosevelt House on the Upper East Side. He said Clinton can thank women like Eleanor Roosevelt, the wife of president Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
"We like to say [Eleanor Roosevelt] never quite broke the glass ceiling but she built the skylight," Holzer said. "If it's going to be broken a lot of that construction that led us to this moment belongs to the great Eleanor Roosevelt."
Gender is playing a big role this election.
"Women have never had it more in the palm of their hands to decide the future of the country, which is an extraordinary achievement," Holzer said. "Shirley Chisholm ran for president in 1972 and did not have all of the women supporting her because they saw it as a lost cause. And there wasn't the kind of unity that there is today. "
"Clinton has put together -- whether she wins or loses -- an extraordinary set of experiences that have really allowed her to leap over obstacles that got in the way of all of her predecessors raising enough money, having the national profile," Fitzpatrick said. "She really is standing on the shoulders of many, many predecessors."
If just women -- no men-- voted in the election, Clinton would win the electoral votes needed in a landslide, according to the website fivethirtyeight.com. If just men voted, Donald Trump would win by a landslide.