This Week in Women’s Business History

January 24 – 30

Jan. 24, 1883
Aminta Gomes Casseres is born. She was an advertising executive and editorial group chief at J Walter Thompson from 1916 until 1947.

Jan. 25, 1999
Sarah L. “Sadie” Delany dies. Co-author of Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters First 100 Years (with her sister Bessie and Amy Hill Hearth), Sadie Delany worked as a New York City school teacher and, for a few years, supplemented that income with a small candy business, Delany’s Delights, Inc., which she closed after the 1929 stock market crash.

Jan. 26, 1872
Julia Morgan is born. She was the first female student at University of California—Berkeley’s College of Engineering; the first woman admitted to and graduated from Ecole des Beaux-Arts (Paris) architecture section; and the first woman granted an architect’s license in California. She opened her practice in 1904 and is remembered primarily for designing William Randolph Hearst’s castle, San Simeon.

Jan. 27, 1976
Edytha Evancie March dies. For twenty-five years March was chief executive of the North New York Savings & Loan Association (the name changed to “Savings Bank” in 1971). She took a summer job at the bank in 1935 and never left.

Jan. 28, 1964
Marion Dorn dies. An interior decorator, artist, and entrepreneur, Dorn founded Marion Dorn Ltd. and designed rugs, fabrics, wall coverings for clients.

Jan. 29, 1914
Geraldine Rhoads is born. She was editor of Woman’s Day magazine between 1966 and 1982.

Jan. 30, 1853
Beatrice DeMille is born. To support her three children after her husband’s death, she went to work as a play broker, eventually selling her New York company and joining son Cecil B. in Hollywood.

Last week in women’s business history

Jan. 17, 1872
Edna Wallace Hopper is born. She was an actress who started a cosmetics company. Late in her career worked in a brokerage.

Jan. 18, 1974
Eartha M. M. White dies. White, the daughter of slaves, became a successful entrepreneur and used her profits to support her philanthropies. While working as a teacher, White owned a series of small businesses: a dry-goods store, an employment agency and janitorial contracting service, and a steam laundry. She was also did well in real estate.

Jan. 19, 1905
Oveta Culp Hobby is born. She was publisher of the Houston Post, director of the Women’s Army Corp during World War II, and US Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare under President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Jan. 20, 1898
Consumers’ League of the City of New York is incorporated. Founded in 1890 to mobilize “leisure class” women to use their purchasing power to better the conditions of women working in retail stores, this was the pioneer group that led to the national organization.

Jan. 21, 1959
Elise Strang L’Esperance dies. After earning her MD in 1900, L’Esperance eventually became a pathologist. She developed a model of cancer treatment that stressed early detection and prevention then opened the Kate Depew Strang Clinic (now called the Strang Cancer Prevention Institute) which she directed the clinic for over twenty years.

Jan. 22, 1879
Nellie M. Scott Rogers is born. Hired in 1904 as a secretary to the president of Bantam Ball Bearing Company, Scott succeeded him as president in 1919.

Jan. 23, 1860
Minna “Minnie” Eshleman Sherman is born. She was the owner of the Minnewawa (Wind of the Trees) Vineyard in Fresno, CA.