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Wednesday 13 August 2014

Typewriting Ladies of Spain

María Espinosa
Pioneering Spanish feminist María Espinosa de los Monteros y Díaz de Santiago was 22 when in 1897 she was appointed a director of the Yost Typewriter Company's Spanish operations by Yost's European general manager Milton Bartholomew.
Milton Bartholomew
Bartholomew wrote in Pitman's Phonetic Journal on June 13, 1903, "I think I have provided in [Spain] something without previous record in the business of typewriters. I have appointed a woman as director for most of Spain. [She] is a Spanish lady, and one of the smartest businesswomen with whom I have ever tried. [She] speaks English fluently ... and has legal powers ... to sign for the company. [She is] not just a capable director, but also an extremely intelligent vendor ... when attending a competition to demonstrate the advantages of our machine, the other competitors do not want to participate."
María was born in Estepona on May 13, 1875. In 1918 she helped found the National Association of Spanish Women (ANME), of which she was the first president. The organisation called for women's suffrage, access to official and professional positions, equal pay and more education opportunities. María lived her last years in Alicante, where she died on December 17, 1946, aged 71. 
María Moliner
Lexicographer María Juana Moliner Ruiz was born in Paniza, Zaragoza, on March 30, 1900. Her best known work was Diccionario de uso del español, first published in 1966, when she completed work started in 1952.
María obtained a degree in history in 1921 from the University of Zaragoza. In 1946 she was put in charge of the library at the Superior Technical School of Industrial Engineers in Madrid, where she remained until her retirement in 1970. María died in Madrid on January 22, 1981, aged 80.

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