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Thursday, December 3, 2015

Ellen Henrietta Swallow Richards Pioneer of Home Economics

Ellen Henrietta Swallow Richards was born today nearly 175 years ago. She was both an industrial and environmental chemist in the U.S. during the 19th century. She was pioneer in sanitary engineering and experimental research in domestic science. As the founder of the home economics movement where science and the home as well as the science of chemistry and nutrition grew a relationship. She believed that a woman's work within the home was a vital aspect of economy.

After graduating from college Ellen took an unpaid chemistry lecturer from 1873 to 1878. In 1884 she started work as an instructor at the newly founded laboratory of sanitary chemistry at Lawrence Experiment Station. She continued this work til her death.

She did much work in her life that helped the home and world. She helped to lead Massachusetts to establish water quality standards in America and the first sewage treatment plant was created. She wrote books for the home as well such as Chemistry of Cooking and Cleaning, Food Materials and Their Adulturations She also did work that helped to lead to the passing of the first Pure Food and Drug Act in Massachusetts.


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