This Week in Women’s Business History

September 20 – 26

Sept. 20, 1972
Dorothy Liebes dies. Liebes was a textile artist and designer whose firm, Dorothy Liebes Design Inc., not only fulfilled commissions for commercial fabrics from architects and businesses, but also tested synthetic fibers for corporate clients like Dow, Dupont, and carpeting giant Bigelow-Sanford.

Sept. 21, 1959
Dorcas Campbell dies. Campbell was a prominent banker, who was the first female vice president of the East River Savings Bank (located in New York City). She published Careers for Women in Banking and Finance in 1944. Campbell earned her MBA from New York University’s Sterns School of Business.

Sept. 22, 1974
Jessica Daves dies. Daves was editor of Vogue between 1952 and 1962.

Sept. 23, 1863
Mary Church Terrell is born. She was the first president of the National Association of Colored Women, a federation of local Black women’s clubs.

Sept. 24, 1922
Alice Weel Bigart is born. She was a television producer and writer for the news division of CBS.

Sept. 25, 1903
Olive Ann Beech is born. She co-founded Beech Aircraft and ran the company for more than thirty years.

Sept. 26, 1968
Martha Minerva Franklin dies. Franklin was the first president of the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses (NACGN), the organization she co-founded in 1908, a period when segregation prevented Black women from joining the American Nurses Association.

Last week in women’s business history

Sept. 13, 1963
The first business day for Mary Kay Ash’s Mary Kay Cosmetics.

Sept. 14, 1830
Emily Edson Briggs is born. She was the first president of Women’s National Press Association.

Sept. 15, 1947
Elizabeth C. Quinlan dies. When Fred D. Young opened his small women’s wear shop in 1895, Elizabeth Quinlan was his saleswoman. In 1903 it became the Young-Quinlan Company. Quinlan took over ownership and management when Young died in 1911. She brought ready-to-wear fashions from New York and Paris to her customers in Minneapolis, putting her store in the forefront of merchandising. In 1926 she opened the store’s new building which still stands.

Sept. 16, 1876
Marian Cruger Coffin is born. She founded her own landscape design business when she could not get a job with established firms.

Sept. 17, 1919
Donnelly Garment Co. was incorporated in Kansas City, MO by Nell Donnelly to manufacture Donnelly’s dress designs.

Sept. 18, 1914
Frank Leslie dies. Born Miriam Florence Follin, she changed her name to “Frank Leslie” when she took control of Frank Leslie’s Publishing House after the death of her husband, the original Frank Leslie. The company was deeply in debt, but she quickly returned it to profitability and it flourished under her management.

Sept. 19, 1870
Josephine B. Doud is born. She founded Indianapolis’s Betsy Ross Candy Shops.

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