By Edith Guerrier
The tale of the existence and several other careers of Edith Guerrier, who embodied the beliefs of the "New girls" in turn-of-the century the United States
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Extra resources for An independent woman: the autobiography of Edith Guerrier
After several years in North Bennet Street, Guerrier was asked to exchange her duties in the nursery for the task of taking charge of five girls' clubs, then being organized in local neighborhood houses, and of maintaining the girls' reading room at North Bennet Street. 25 She started story-hour groups for girls of various ages, the youngest group consisting of fourth graders and the oldest, who met on Saturday evening, high-school girls. These groups caught the interest of Helen Osborne Storrow, a member of the Board of Managers of the North Bennet Street Industrial School and the philanthropic wife of the wealthy Boston lawyer and civic leader, James Jackson Storrow.
Women often passed on the help they received to the next generation of women. Edith Guerrier's life story is an example of women improvising a new kind of life for women as they networked across social class and among ethnic groups, together defining their lives and insuring their survival with stylebread and rosesin a new world. Page xix Preface My attention first settled on Edith Guerrier as I was casting a topic might a group university about for that interest of women whose monthly luncheon meeting I had been asked to address.
In addition to sponsoring the Paul Revere Pottery and the library clubs, she brought the Girl Scouts to Boston and was the principal founder of the Women's City Club. 14 Both Shaw and Storrow were new women, too, instituting and directing their philanthropies on their own. Page xvi Although she always expected to be called "Miss Guerrier," Edith Guerrier developed a more erapathetic relationship with the young women she served than many social reformers in the Progressive movement. Her connection with the women from the library clubs was a genuine one and lasted long after most of them ceased to meet on a regular basis.