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Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Mary LaskerMary Lasker
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had no background in the sense that people here have: good prep school and a college background.

She could sell any idea or anything that she wanted to; it was a natural talent. She was painfully honest, literally honest at times, which was extraordinary, because she had this quality of being able to interest and sell people on things and on ideas.


She must have had an artistic flair also.


She appreciated anything beautiful very much.

She went to live in Watertown, Wisconsin in about 1896. She found it a small town that was very dull. My father was a banker there who had investments in various enterprises in the Middlewest. I can remember when I was very little that she was passionately interested in getting a public library for the town, and my father helped her to do this. She went out and raised money so that the Carnegie Foundation gave money for the public library. I think they had to match the funds that were raised 50--50.

She was terribly interested in parks. She got two parks at least established in the town, and she was altogether a very constructive and civic-minded person.

When she came to live in New York after my father died in 1933, she got interested in the Outdoor Cleanliness Association

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