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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

July 16

Born this day in 1836, Marietta Holley. A humorist writer as popular as Mark Twain. Ms. Holley published under the name, "Josiah Allen's wife". Mrs. Allen who lived in a small town and often traveled. Always packed her small town common sense and wisdom that always helped the big city folk out- and with much laughter.
Cliara Offreduccio was born this day in 1194.
Religious founder of "The Order of Saint Clair" better known as the "Poor Clair's".
Fleeing her father's home to avoid a marriage, Clair found protection with Saint Frances of Assisi as one of his followers. This lead Clair to founding a sister-
order named "The Poor Ladies" and only after Saint Clair's death was the name changed to "The Order of the Saint Clare's" an order that still exist today.

July 15

Born this day in 1867, Maggie L. Walker, a woman that changed the world of
business with her vision and dedication to supporting and helping Black
Americans at a time when separatism was growing in the South.

"Let us put our money together, let us use our money. Let us put our money out
at usury among ourselves and reap the benefit ourselves."

Ms. Walker was a teacher and as she taught by day she studied accounting by night.
As a member of "The Independent Order of Saint Luke's", a black social and civic organization. Ms. Walker worked her way up and was elected the Right Worthy Grand-Secretary-Treasure. A starting salary one third of what it should have paid 8 dollars a month. This did not stop Maggie Walker- as a talented public speaker she toured to increase membership. Raising membership up to 100,000 with 1,500 local chapters. Leading The Order out of debt.
Maggie Walker dreamed of opening a bank that was owned and operated by Black Americans and her dream came true- On November 2, 1903- making her the first woman to be founder and serve as president of "Saint Luke Penny Savings Bank" and becoming
"Consolidated Bank and Trust" which is still operating today.
To read more about Maggie Walker. "Maggie L. Walker: Pioneering Banker and Community Leader" by Candice F. Ransome

July 14

Clara Fisher was born this day in 1811, London, England. A child star, Clara Fisher's father enrolled her in acting lessons at age five and yes, by age six she made her stage debut on the Drury Lane Theatre in David Garrick's production of "Lilliput". The audience was "astonished" with the great talent Clara brought to the role of "Lord Flimnap".By her teens she had preformed,"Richard III", "Shylock","Douglas", and "Doctor Pangloss".
Yes, "a child wonder!".
After wowing England, the Fisher family moved to America in 1827. Clara debuted at New York City's "Park Theatre". Clara was the "favorite star" in every city- and "electrified" her audiences with her "Ophelia", "Viola","Cherumbino" and "Susanna".
It created a "Clara Fisher Craze"- folks named their babies, steamboats, hotels, racehorses and many others things- Clara Fisher. Poetry was written about her. A nineteenth century super star!
In 1834, Clara married composer and vocal coach, James Gaspard Maeder. He wrote the
opera, "Peri" or "The Enchanted Fountain" for Clara. Together they opened a theatre in New Orleans and blessed the world with seven children. Clara Fisher was so wealthy she retired early in 1844 and for six years over spent and made bad investments. And so Ms. Fisher returned to the stage in 1850 and worked for another 38 years. Known in her later years as the 'oldest living actress'. Clara Fisher was a working actress for 72 years.