|Repository:||University of Georgia Archives|
|Creator:||Creswell, Mary E., (Mary Ethel), 1878-1960|
|Title:||Mary Ethel Creswell papers|
|Quantity:||7.5 Linear feet (6 boxes)|
In 1919, Mary Ethel Creswell (1878-1960) became the first woman to receive a baccalaureate degree from the University of Georgia. Even before this accomplishment, Creswell had an impressive history. She had graduated from and worked at the Georgia State Normal School, attended the University of Chicago during summer quarters and taught for a while in the Walton County public schools. Creswell eventually moved to Washington D.C. where she was a Field Agent for the U.S. Department of Agriculture and became the Department's first female supervisor. It was during this time that she is credited with coining the term "home demonstration".
Andrew Soule, who was president of the State College of Agriculture at the University of Georgia, appointed Creswell director of the newly created Home Economics division in 1918. With the reorganization of the University of Georgia in 1933, Creswell became the first dean of the School of Home Economics, a position that she held until her retirement in 1945. After retiring as dean, Mary Creswell taught classes at the School of Home Economics from 1945 through 1949.
In 1949, University Chancellor Harmon Caldwell presented Mary Creswell with the first Alumni Service award given to a woman and in 1949-1950 she served as President of the University of Georgia chapter of the Phi Kappa Phi. In 1963, the newly constructed Creswell Dormitory was named in her honor.
Mary Creswell's younger sister, Edith Vaughn Creswell, was one of the first four female students who enrolled for classes at UGA in September 1918. She received her B.S. degree in Home Economics from the University of Georgia in 1920 and went on to become the first dean of women at Abraham Baldwin College in Tifton.
The Mary Ethel Creswell papers consist of documents relating to her life before and after becoming the first woman to receive an undergraduate degree from the University of Georgia and the first dean of the School of Home Economics. The collection includes correspondence, photographs, speeches, clippings, certificates, and printed material. Additionally, some material pertains to Mary's sister, Edith Vaughn Creswell.
This collection is arranged into 5 series: miscellaneous, professional, personal, photographs and diplomas/certificates.
Mary Ethel Creswell papers, UA0014, University Archives, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.