Changemaker: Mary Lyon

Chemist and educator Mary Lyon founded Mount Holyoke College—then called Mount Holyoke Female Seminary—in 1837, nearly a century before women gained the right to vote. At the time, there were 120 colleges for men in the United States, but none for women. With the opening of Mount Holyoke, college-aged women could claim their own institution of higher education.

Mary Lyon

Joseph Goodhue Chandler (American, 1813-1884)
Mary Lyon, Oil on canvas, 1850 or after
Mount Holyoke College Art Museum, South Hadley, Massachusetts
1885.221I(b).PI Photograph Mount Holyoke College Digitization Center


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