Author Archives: Lynn

Dorothy Thompson Wears a Size 20, 1955

Known for her hard hitting reportage about global and national politics, famous journalist Dorothy Thompson (1893-1961) was also interested in clothes.  In 1955, she wrote a column called “I Wished They’d Remember Me” in which she lamented the lack of … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Guests at the Wedding

Family snapshots are my bread and butter, so I was very happy to discover a new source on the website Internetarchive.org.  Scattered throughout the pages were several photos of the same wedding. Someone dated them 1948, but the clothes tell … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

The World of Mrs. Exeter

If you have been reading this blog for any length of time, you know my fascination with Mrs. Exeter, an older woman of fashion invented by Vogue magazine after World War Two.  She was featured on the magazine’s pages for … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s, 1950s, 1960s | Tagged | 7 Comments

Shirley Chisholm–Unbought, Unbossed

Shirley Chisholm (1924-2005) was a trailblazer.  In 1968, she became the first African American woman elected to the House of Representative. Four years later, at the age of 48, she ran for president. Her slogan was “Unbought, Unbossed,” perhaps one … Continue reading

Posted in 1970s, 1980s, 1990 | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Ann Lowe, Custom Designer for the Upper Crust

Ann Lowe (1898-1981) was the first African American to open a custom dress studio on Madison Avenue in Manhattan. During the fifties and sixties, she was a favorite designer for the moneyed elite, creating debutante and wedding dresses. Perhaps her … Continue reading

Posted in 1950s, 1960s, General | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

A Festive Evening at Howard University, 1963

Since it’s not that easy to find photos of older women in evening clothes, I was thrilled to discover this portrait of the Home Economics Faculty at Howard University attending the opening of their new building in 1963.  Howard University, … Continue reading

Posted in 1960s | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Women Get Weary but They don’t Give Up, 1991

This colorful mural by artist Alice Patrick is on the side of the office of the National Council of Negro Women in Los Angeles.  The woman in black is famous African American educator Mary Bethune (1875-1955), founder of the organization. … Continue reading

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Portrait with Chair, ca. 1910

This dignified portrait of an older African American woman comes from the studio of the photographer Michael Francis Blake in Charleston, South Carolina. According to the records at Duke University, most of his customers were black.  The studio was apparently … Continue reading

Posted in 1910s | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Hand Sewing, 1942

In honor of Black History Month, I’m seeking out photos of older black women.  This beautiful portrait of a woman doing hand sewing has been on my radar for a long time.  It is one of a series of photos … Continue reading

Posted in 1940s | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

About Pantsuits, Not Politics

The American media is abuzz with interpretations of what Melania Trump might have meant by donning a white pantsuit to her husband’s first State of the Union speech.  If you want to read a particularly clever analysis, try the article … Continue reading

Posted in 2010s | Tagged , , | 1 Comment