Bowen, Louise (1859–1953)

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Bowen, Louise (1859–1953)

American philanthropist. Name variations: Louise deKoven Bowen. Born Louise deKoven, Feb 26, 1859, in Chicago, Illinois; died Nov 9, 1953, in Chicago; dau. of John deKoven and Helen (Hadduck) deKoven; attended Dearborn Seminary; m. Joseph Tilton Bowen (businessman), June 1, 1886 (died 1911); children: John (b. 1887), Joseph Tilton Jr. (b. 1889), Helen Hadduck (b. 1891) and Louise deKoven (b. 1893).

Taught Sunday school classes for "bad boys" at St. James Episcopal Cathedral, Chicago (c. 1875–86), and established one of city's 1st boys' clubhouses, Huron Street Club; began work with Hull House (1893), becoming trustee (1903); served on Juvenile Court Committee of Chicago (late 1890s), and became president; served as 1st president when Court Committee became Juvenile Protective Association (1907); while Hull House treasurer (beginning 1907), personally financed construction of Boys' Club and Woman's Club buildings; was instrumental in making the Pullman Co. upgrade its medical facilities for workers and in establishing minimum wage for women at International Harvester (1911); served as president of Woman's City Club and vice president of United Charities (1911–15); served as president of Hull House board (1935–44). Wrote The Colored People of Chicago (1913).

See also autobiographies, Growing Up with a City (1926), Baymeath (1944) and Open Windows: Stories of People and Places (1946).

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