Women in Kentucky - Business

Caroline Burnam Taylor: For most 19th century women, few income-producing jobs were available. School teaching was an acceptable position; dressmaking was another one. Caroline “Carrie” Burnam Taylor was a well-known Kentucky modiste, and at the turn of the century her name was synonymous with fine clothing. In 1903, Bowling Green native Caroline B. Taylor paid $3000 fora lot on which she erected the Mrs. A.H. Taylor Company.

Many of the fabrics used in Carrie Taylor’s dresses came from Louisville and Nashville. But she also made frequent trips to New York and Europe. In Paris, she attended fashion exhibits, sketched designs and bought silk, velvets, and laces. Government records indicate the dressmaking firm was the state’s largest employer of women.

Caroline Taylor based her success on quality, business acumen and a sense of fashion and style. The A.H. Taylor Company closed its doors in 1927, ending a half-century of service to fashion-minded women across the nation.

--Nancy Disher Baird, Kentucky History Librarian, Library Special Collections, Western Kentucky University

In 1904, the A.H. Taylor Company published
Styles and Thegistofit, a fashion magazine for women.

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Site Overview


A. What

Performing Arts
Public Service

B. When

View a selected history of women
View a selected history of women
Sounds and images
Civil War Diaries

C. Where

Central / Northern Kentucky
Western Kentucky
Eastern Kentucky
Southern Kentucky


Selected Readings
Educational Tools
Web tools
Archival Collections
Children's Books

E. About this Project

Women in Sports:

Minnie Adkins
Elizabeth Barret, Anne Lewis, Mimi Pickering, & Justine Richardson
Jane Burch Cochran
Joan Dance
Enid Yandell

Women in Business:

Nelda Barton-Collings
Julia Dinsmore
Laura Freeman
Mattie Mack
Lena Madesin Phillips
Caroline Burnam Taylor

Women in Education:

Helen Lew Lang
Katherine Pettit
Jane Stephenson
Cora Wilson Stewart

Women in Health/Medicine:

Mary Britton
Linda Neville
Ora Framer Porter
Louise Southgate, M.D.

Women in Journalism:

Linda Boileau
Alice Allison Dunnigan

Women in Law:

Pearl Carter Pace
Lt. Colonel Linda Smith

Women in Literature:

Effie Waller Smith

Women in Military:

Lt. Anna Mac Clarke
Capt. Helen Horlacher Evans
Julia Ann Marcum

Women in Music:

Sarah Ogan Gunning
Helen Humes
Lily May Ledford
Reel World String Band
Jean Ritchie
Mary Wheeler

Women as Pioneers:

Esther Whitley

Women in Public Service:

Governor Martha Layne Collins
Emma Guy Cromwell
Rep. Mary Elliott Flanery
Sen. Georgia Davis Powers
Lt. Gov. Thelma Stovall

Women in Reform:

Madeline McDowell Breckinridge
Laura Clay
Eula Hall
Josephine Henry
Belinda Mason
Lois Morris
Eliza Caroline Calvert Obenchain
Charlotte Richardson
Joan Robinett
Mary Sue Whayne
Corinne Whitehead
Evelyn Williams

Women in Religion:

Eldress Nancy Moore
Rabbi Gaylia Rooks

Women in Science:

Sarah Frances Price
Ellen Churchill Semple

Women in Sports:

Terri Cecil-Ramsey
Geri Grigsby
Audrey Whitlock Peterson
Mary T. Meagher Plant