This week’s person in history is Candace Wheeler. She was instrumental in giving women the opportunity to have home businesses. She also helped the famous Tiffany Co. in its early days. I hope you enjoy learning more about her.
Candace Wheeler was America’s first important woman textile and interior designer. At the age of 49, Wheeler, wife, mother, and amateur flower painter, visited the 1876 Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition, where she saw an exhibition of embroideries made at London’s Royal School of Art Needlework, which had been formed to teach women to create needleworks of professional quality, thereby providing them with a means of support. Inspired by the exhibit and by the Royal School’s mission, Wheeler founded the Society of Decorative Art in New York in 1877, an organization devoted to helping American women artists and artisans gain training in the applied arts, and helped to start related societies in Chicago, St. Louis, Hartford, Detroit, Troy, New York and Charleston, South Carolina. In 1878, Wheeler helped launch the New York Exchange for Women’s Work, where women could sell any product that they could manufacture at home, including baked goods and household linens. Click here to read more.