Celebrating Millicent C. McIntosh 1898-2001

Courtesy of the Barnard College Archives

In celebration of the legacy of Millicent C. McIntosh at Barnard and in correlation with the reunion event and dedication of the The Millicent Carey McIntosh Terrace on June 4, 2011, the Archives announces a new exhibition on display in the Altschul Atrium, "Celebrating Millicent C. McIntosh 1898-2001." The exhibition of photographs and documents courtesy of the Barnard College Archives will be on display from Friday, June 3 - Thursday, June 23, 2011. 

Courtesy of the Barnard College Archives


Millicent C. McIntosh was a leader in higher education and an inspiring role model for many women during the 1940s and 50s. She was the fourth dean of Barnard College (1947-1952) and the College’s first president, elected in 1952. A Baltimore native, she received her B.A. in English and Greek from Bryn Mawr College in 1920, and a Ph.D. in English from John Hopkins in 1926. From 1926-1930 she taught at Bryn Mawr College and served as acting dean from 1929-1930. She was the headmistress of the Brearley School in New York City from 1930 until 1947 when she accepted the position of Dean of Barnard College. Mrs. McIntosh led the College for over a decade, setting the example for a generation of women that one could ‘do it all.’ As an influential leader in a time when many women were forced to choose between a family or a career, Mrs. McIntosh showed you could successfully do both by managing a demanding career as well as devoting time to her family (she was a wife and mother of five). Known by most students as a personable leader, and one who could ‘have it all,’ she was affectionately called “Mrs. Mac.” During her fifteen years at Barnard, Mrs. McIntosh played a key role in the development of higher education, introducing the pre-professional programs in education and social sciences and broadening the Barnard-Columbia affiliation. The Barnard Forum, a one day annual meeting, grew out of her vision to create a special event to provide partnership and inspiration for members of college alumnae groups in New York City. She successfully implemented development plans for the College and oversaw the funding for the much needed expansion of the College. During her tenure Milbank Hall was remodeled, providing a new theater space for the Minor Latham Playhouse and newly installed equipment in many of the classrooms. Lehman Hall-Wollman Library, built in 1959, provided new academic offices and a new library, and in 1961, Helen Reid Hall was completed providing much needed residential space. International education exchange expanded under Mrs. McIntosh’s leadership. With approval from the Trustees a new staff position was created for a foreign students’ adviser and faculty members were encouraged to study and lecture abroad. She wrote and spoke extensively on issues concerning women, work and family (the Archives holds a number of transcripts of her speeches and manuscripts), all while balancing an active family life. 
 

President McIntosh (left) shaking hands with Columbia University President Dwight D. Eisenhower in front of Barnard Hall, September 23, 1948 (Photograph by Manny Warman, courtesy of the Barnard College Archives)
 

Millicent Cary and friend at the top of Mt Adams, New Hampshire, c. 1918 (Box 2, Folder: 'Christmas Cards and Letters', courtesy of the Barnard College Archives)
 

The 2009 exhibition "Celebrating Millicent C. McIntosh 1898-2001" can also be viewed online