Tag Archives: Pennsylvania

Mae Reeves, Queen of Hats

You might know the names of famous black fashion designers—Ann Lowe is having a moment on sewing sites right now.  But how about black milliners?  One the biggest names in that field is Mae Reeves (1912-2016), who ran an extremely … Continue reading

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Sewing and Chatting, 1970

Home sewing can be an isolating activity, but not if you take your work outside.  I wonder what the woman on the left is doing.  Darning? Hemming? Making a couture outfit by hand? Whatever it is, she has a friend … Continue reading

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Easter Hat Competition, 1976

With her stunning creation, including both bunnies and chickens, one wonders why this woman was only a semi-finalist in the Philadelphia Easter hat competition.  The photo of Mrs. Ann Jackson, age eighty three, appeared in the Philadelphia Evening Standard in … Continue reading

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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

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Who Was Mrs. Ralston?

If you have ever looked at issues of Ladies Home Journal in the early twentieth century, you probably have come across articles by one Mrs. Ralston.  She gave advice on current fashion trends for all age groups and answered questions … Continue reading

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Women Voting, 1944

This imaginative photograph comes from the 1944 presidential election. Voting took place as American troops were still fighting in Europe and Asia. Sitting President Franklin D. Roosevelt won 81% of the popular vote.  Such a landslide is unthinkable in today’s … Continue reading

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Maggie Kuhn–Fierce

When Maggie Kuhn (1905-1995) was forced to retire once she turned sixty-five, her coworkers gave her a sewing machine.  They had seriously misjudged her retirement plans.  Kuhn had worked as an organizer all her life, first developing programs for working … Continue reading

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Italian Mothers Club of Philadelphia at the New York World’s Fair

The dome and sphere that you see in the background of this photograph are the two most important symbols of the 1939-40 New York World’s Fair, so famous that they even got their own stamp.  The New York Public Library … Continue reading

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