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Briarcliff Historical Society Discusses Colonial-Era Businesswomen

Jean Zimmerman
Jean Zimmerman Photo Credit: Facebook

BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. -- Westchester author and historian Jean Zimmerman is scheduled to speak at the Briarcliff Historical Society's annual meeting on Sunday, April 3, in Briarcliff Congregational Church's Parish Hall.

Zimmerman will discuss her book "The Women of the House: How a Colonial She-Merchant Built a Mansion, a Fortune, and a Dynasty."

Colonial Manhattan was a center of activity for female merchants, who owned shops and ships and traded everything from linens to looking glasses. Dutch law and culture encouraged such women to prosper long before there was any sort of professional ladder for women to climb.

"The Women of the House" is the true story of Margaret Hardenbroeck, fur trader and ship merchant, who made her fortune amassing a fleet of two dozen ships on which she herself sailed.

Zimmerman will tell of Hardenbroeck’s exploits along with those of three other powerful women in New York’s Philipse family. This program will be of interest to women’s studies enthusiasts, history buffs and anyone who enjoys a journey through Colonial-era New York with lots of surprises.

To RSVP for the event, call (914)- 941-4393 or email

The event starts at 2 p.m.

Briarcliff Congregational Church is at 30 S. State St., Briarcliff Manor.

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