Women philanthropists


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[Coal barons at the Savage Mine, Virginia City, Nevada]
[ca. 1860-1880]
Marie-Louise (Louise) Hungerford Bryant Mackey and Theresa Rooney Fair were among the few to find fortune in the Virginia City, Nevada, mining settlement. Both women came from humble circumstances. Theresa Rooney was the daughter of Irish immigrants and married Irish immigrant James Fair. Louise Bryant, after the death of her first husband, supported herself and her children by working as a seamstress and teaching French at the Daughters of Charity convent school. She was almost destitute when she met and married Irishman John W. Mackey in the 1860s. In 1867, the Mackeys and Fairs literally struck gold when their company discovered the biggest bonanza in the famed Comstock Lode. The Mackeys were generous patrons to the local Catholic parish and convent. Louise donated the land for the Daughters of Charity hospital. Theresa Fair also made the Daughters of Charity hospital her most important philanthropy.
[Coal barons at the Savage Mine, Virginia City, Nevada], [ca. 1860-1880], Lisa Unger Baskin Collection, Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University. Accessed March 20, 2023, https://exhibits.library.duke.edu/exhibits/show/baskin/item/4167


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