This exhibition was on display in the lobby of Lehman Hall from June-November 2009. Presented here are a few select items from the exhibit.
View of the display case.
Dean Millicent C. McIntosh.
Courtesy of the Barnard College Archives.
Millicent C. McIntosh was a leader in higher education and an inspiring role model for many women during the 1940s and 50s. She was the fourth dean of Barnard College (1947-1952) and the College’s first president, elected in 1952. A Baltimore native, she received her B.A. in English and Greek from Bryn Mawr College in 1920, and a Ph.D. in English from John Hopkins in 1926. From 1926-1930 she taught at Bryn Mawr College and served as acting dean from 1929-1930. She was the headmistress of the Brearley School in New York City from 1930 until 1947 when she accepted the position of Dean of Barnard College. Mrs. McIntosh led the College for over a decade, setting the example for a generation of women that one could ‘do it all.’ As an influential leader in a time when many women were forced to choose between a family or a career, Mrs. McIntosh showed you could successfully do both by managing a demanding career as well as devoting time to her family (she was a wife and mother of five).
President McIntosh at Lehman Hall's "topping off" ceremony, December 1, 1958.
Courtesy of the Barnard College Archives.
Known by most students as a personable leader, and one who could ‘have it all,’ she was affectionately called “Mrs. Mac.” During her fifteen years at Barnard, Mrs. McIntosh played a key role in the development of higher education, introducing the pre-professional programs in education and social sciences and broadening the Barnard-Columbia affiliation. The Barnard Forum, a one day annual meeting, grew out of her vision to create a special event to provide partnership and inspiration for members of college alumnae groups in New York City. She successfully implemented development plans for the College and oversaw the funding for the much needed expansion of the College. During her tenure Milbank Hall was remodeled, providing a new theater space for the Minor Latham Playhouse and newly installed equipment in many of the classrooms. Lehman Hall-Wollman Library, built in 1959, provided new academic offices and a new library, and in 1961, Helen Reid Hall was completed providing much needed residential space. International education exchange expanded under Mrs. McIntosh’s leadership. With approval from the Trustees a new staff position was created for a foreign students’ adviser and faculty members were encouraged to study and lecture abroad. She wrote and spoke extensively on issues concerning women, work and family (the Archives holds a number of transcripts of her speeches and manuscripts), all while balancing an active family life.
Inaugural procession, October 24, 1947.
Photograph by Paul Parker, courtesy of the Barnard College Archives.
The Installation of Millicent C. McIntosh as Dean was the first inaugural event at Barnard to be extensively documented photographically, primarily by contract photographer Paul Parker. While the archives retains hundreds (upon hundreds) of photographs documenting important ceremonial events throughout Barnard history, Mr. Parker’s photographs of the McIntosh Installation are among the earliest inaugural images we presently hold. The archival photographic print displayed here, depicts a bird’s eye view of the Installation ceremony, with newly appointed Dean McIntosh in standing center stage, Barnard Gymnasium, October 24, 1947.
If one were to look at Barnard’s social calendar, the tradition of the College Tea would be evident. Weekly teas were held in the College Parlor in Barnard Hall for students and faculty to interact with one another outside the classroom. Teas were also used to integrate students with one another such as the series of teas held to honor transfer or foreign students as a means of introducing them to current Barnard students. In 1952 the first tea series to honor foreign students was established. In typical McIntosh fashion, Mrs. Mac continued the tradition down to the white gloves, while updating the social event.
Tea invitation card, 1952.
Tea invitation card, 1953.
While not all teas required an invitation, these two cards on display indicate the active tea calendar. The Archives holds the College Scrapbooks of Social Activities 1924-1953 (now disassembled) that were put together by Mrs. English, Director of Student Affairs. Barnard College Archives: Administration, Office of Student Affairs, Scrapbook of Social Activities, 1952-1953 Box 6 of 6, Folder 1952-1953.
View of the display case with two articles: one from the January 1963 issue of Glamour magazine, and a clipping from an unknown newspaper dated 1965. Each exemplifies McIntosh’s view on sexual relationships. Barnard College Archives: Millicent C. McIntosh Papers (unprocessed) Box 1, folder, ‘Generations: Gap: Sex Ethics.’
Barnard College Archives: Millicent C. McIntosh Papers (unprocessed) Box 2, Folder: Christmas Cards and Letters
Dr. and Mrs. McIntosh resided in New York City from the time of their marriage in 1932 until their retirement in 1962, when they permanently relocated to Tyringham, Massachusetts in the Berkshires. Trips back to city were frequent as remarked in the annual ‘bulletin,’ “Our second year of retirement in many ways seemed in many ways even more pleasant and interesting than the first.....We continued our delightful arrangement with Helen Rice to use a double room in her apartment....in New York, and stayed there for two or three days nearly every week during the winter and fall.”