Caresse Crosby: The Modern Bra
Obviously, before Caresse Crosby, women had methods of containing their bosoms. Some historical accounts credit one person with inventing the bra – but in reality, the bra doesn’t have just one inventor. Over the centuries, bra design has evolved from concept to concept and design to design to become what it is today. The early 1500s marked the arrival of the corset among women in France. It grew in popularity as an undergarment that helped give women what was considered to be the perfect figure: the inverted cone shape. At this time, most corsets had a long piece of wood or whalebone sewn into the casing. In 1889, French designer Herminie Cadolle cut a corset in two, creating two separate undergarments. The top section supported the breasts by means of straps, while the lower piece cinched and shaped the waist. And the bra metamorphosed once more in 1910 with the invention of the modern bra.
Mary Phelps Jacob, now known as Caresse Crosby, made history for women around the world. Frustrated with the constrictions of her whalebone corset, she sewed together two pocket handkerchiefs and some pink ribbon to create a prototype bra in 1910. Based on its instant popularity, she was awarded the first patent for the modern bra, which she eventually sold for a pittance to Warner Brothers Corset Company, who went on to make millions. Her life was transformed in 1920, with the arrival of a young soldier seven years her junior. This was Harry Crosby, 22-year-old war hero, wealthy scion of a prominent Boston family and nephew of J.P. Morgan. He met Caresse – then known as Polly Peabody – at an Independence Day fair where she was acting as chaperone. He told her he loved her in the Tunnel of Love, she succumbed two weeks later, and after two years of scandalizing Boston high society, her husband granted a divorce and they married and sailed for France. But most women probably celebrate her happy ending.
Candace Pert: Neuroscience Findings
Candace Pert was an internationally recognized neuroscientist and pharmacologist who published over 250 research articles. She was a significant contributor to the emergence of Mind-Body Medicine as an area of legitimate scientific research in the 1980s, earning her the title of “The Mother of Psychoneuroimmunology”, and “The Goddess of Neuroscience” by her many fans. While a graduate student at Johns Hopkins University, she developed a receptor-binding assay that employed the antagonist naloxone, radiolabeled to high activity, to bind to and detect specific binding in brain homogenates, resulting in the 1973 publication by C.B. Pert and S.H. Snyder in Science, ‘Opiate receptor: demonstration in nervous tissue.’ This was the first demonstration of a receptor in brain, and it ushered in a new era of neuropharmacology and receptor identification in the brain. This game-changing neuroscience revelation was so important that it led to an award—for her professor. Dr. Solomon Snyder was recognized for his student’s achievement.
When Pert wrote a letter of protest to the award committee underscoring her determinant contributions, Dr. Snyder mansplained in response, “That’s how the game is played.” Men like Dr. Snyder have been playing this game for centuries. Although Candace’s scientific work was centered on the pharmacology of peptides and receptors, her achievements went beyond academia and drug development. A shift in her intellectual focus was evident in a 1985 publication in the Journal of Immunology, in which she proposed that neuropeptides and their receptors form a psychosomatic network throughout the brain and body. Internationally recognized, she began to lecture on neuropeptides and their receptors in the broader context of the ‘bodymind’ in health and disease.
Where do we find this Stuff? Here are our Sources:
- Women That Left Their Mark Throughout History
- The Women Who Inspired the World Despite Being Put Down
- 20 Women Who Posed as Men and Made History Into HERstory
- 16 Remarkable But Frequently Overlooked Women
- The 10 Women Behind 10 of the Most Influential Men of History
- 10 Great Women of History Who Could Run Circles Around Today’s Political Leaders
- 10 Fearsome Women in History Who Defied Gender Roles to Become Warriors