The University Record, July 3, 2000

Photo Stories: Bentley showcases National Housewives League

‘The National Housewives League of America,’ an exhibition of materials from the historically significant League, will be on display July 11 through September at the Bentley Historical Library. The Housewives League of Detroit, founded by Fannie B. Peck in 1930, focused on ways African American housewives could use their purchasing power to support and strengthen African American-owned businesses. The concept quickly spread to other cities, and the local League evolved into the National Housewives League of America, which stressed economic self-empowerment to African Americans for more than 60 years.

The Bentley’s exhibition includes photographs, correspondence, publications and other materials that demonstrate the significant impact the women of the Housewives League made on the development of African American business in the early 20th century, many times working with other organizations such as the National Negro Business League in the 1950s.

At right, Jacqi Haun (left), archivist and recent graduate of the Archives and Records Management Program at the School of Information, and Bentley archivist Kathy Marquis choose photographs of Fannie Peck to include in the exhibition.

The Library’s summer hours are 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m. Monday–Friday. Photo by Rebecca A. Doyle