Miller, Frieda Segelke, 1889-1973

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Frieda Segelke Miller, labor administrator and official, was born at La Crosse, Wisconsin, on April 16, 1889. Her parents, James Gordon, a lawyer, and Erna Segelke, died when Miller was small, leaving Frieda and her younger sister Elsie to be reared by their grandmother, Augusta (Mrs. Charles) Segelke of La Crosse. Miller received her BA from Milwaukee-Downer College (later Lawrence University), Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1911; she then spent four years doing graduate work in economics, sociology, political science, and law at the University of Chicago, but did not complete a degree.

Miller spent the next several years at a variety of jobs, including secretary to the Philadelphia branch of the Women's Trade Union League (1918-1923) where she met her lifelong friend Pauline Newman. In 1920 Miller began a relationship with fellow labor activist Charles Kutz. She became pregnant in 1923, and as Kutz was married with several children and his wife was unlikely to give him a divorce, Miller did not inform him of her pregnancy. She ended their relationship and went on an extended trip to Europe with Newman, ostensibly to attend the International Congress of Working Women in Vienna, Austria. She gave birth to her daughter Elisabeth in Naples, Italy, and legally adopted her after returning to the United States, where she told acquaintances she had adopted the baby in Europe. Miller never married and raised Elisabeth with Newman.

In 1929 Frances Perkins appointed Miller director of the Division of Women in Industry and Minimum Wage at the New York State Department of Labor; she was instrumental in the passage of New York's Minimum Wage Law for Women and Minors in 1933. In 1938 Governor Herbert Lehman appointed Miller Industrial Commissioner of New York, a post she held until 1943 when she left to become special assistant for labor to John C. Winant, United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom.

Late in 1944 Miller became director of the Women's Bureau of the United States Department of Labor. Her major responsibility was the reintegration of women into the economy after their displacement by veterans returning to their pre-war jobs. She conducted studies to examine labor laws and vocational improvements in the conditions of women in the labor force. A Roosevelt appointee, Miller left the Women's Bureau in 1953 at the request of President Eisenhower.

During the 1950s and 1960s Miller focused on international labor issues. As early as 1936 she had begun representing the United States at International Labor Organization conferences; after leaving the Women's Bureau she went to work full-time for the ILO and conducted several major surveys in Asia and the Middle East of working conditions and opportunities for women and children. For a short period (1957-1958) she also represented the International Alliance of Women at the United Nations.

In the early 1960s Miller became United Nations representative for the European organization the International Union for Child welfare, conducting an International Child Welfare Survey (#227) and participating in various UNICEF projects. She left the United Nations in 1967 at the age of 78.

During her long professional life Miller was affiliated with a number of other organizations concerned with women's role in the economy, including the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, the International Council of Women, the Women's Trade Union League, and the International Ladies Garment Worker's Union. She was much in demand both as a speaker and a writer and maintained an international reputation in her field. Her contributions to women and labor were recognized in 1940 when she was awarded an honorary doctorate of humane letters by Russell Sage College. For most of her life she lived in New York, maintaining a summer home in Connecticut and later one in Pennsylvania; she spent the last four years of her life in a New York City nursing home where she died on July 21, 1973.

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Papers, 1854, 1881-1961 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Bondfield, Margaret Grace, 1873-1953. Papers, 1854-1951, 1898-1951 (bulk). Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
referencedIn Records, 1891-1955 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Papers, 1928-1996 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn New York House and School of Industry. Vocational Training Project. Records, 1950-1961 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Consumers' League of Massachusetts. Records, 1891-1955 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Additional papers, (scattered), 1948-1963 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Papers, 1884-1998 (inclusive), 1929-1988 (bulk) Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn New York State Advisory Council on Placement and Unemployment Insurance, chairman's files, 1937-1951 [bulk 1942-1950]. Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives
referencedIn Rose Schneiderman Photographs, 1909-1962 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Newman, Pauline. Papers, 1903-1982 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Newman, Pauline, ca. 1890-1986. Papers, 1900-1980 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Records, 1950-1961 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Miller, Frieda S. Autobiography, 1956. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Ragland, Martha Ragsdale, 1906-1996. Papers, 1926-1996 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Saunders, Cecilia Cabaniss, 1883-1966. Cecilia Cabaniss Saunders papers, 1941-1945. New York Public Library System, NYPL
referencedIn Johnson, Carrie Ashton, 1863-. Series V of the Mary Earhart Dillon Collection, 1889-1941 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Papers, 1940-1953 (scattered), 1955-1961 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Additional papers, (scattered), 1926-1982 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Newman, Pauline. Additional papers, 1926-1982 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Miller, Frieda S. Additional papers, 1948-1963 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Rose Schneiderman Collection. Photographic prints, 1909-1962. Churchill County Museum
referencedIn Young, Louise Merwin, 1903-. Papers, 1946-1980 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Bernays, Doris Fleischman, 1891-1980. Papers, 1914-1977 Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Papers of Frieda S. Miller, 1909-1973 (inclusive), 1929-1967 (bulk) Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Papers, n.d., 1889-1941? Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Gray, Herman A. New York State Advisory Council on Placement and Unemployment Insurance, chairman's files, 1937-1951, bulk 1942-1950. Cornell University Library
referencedIn Sage Colleges. Archives. Honorary degree recipient for 1949, Frieda Miller. The Sage Colleges Libraries
referencedIn Parisi, Angela R., 1914-1961. Papers, 1940-1961 (inclusive), 1955-1961 (bulk). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Bernays, Doris Fleischman, 1891-. Papers, 1914-1978 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Briefs, 1928-1976 Harvard Law School Library Langdell Hall Cambridge, MA 02138
referencedIn Dreier, Mary E. (Mary Elisabeth), 1875-1963. Papers, 1797-1963 (inclusive), 1897-1963 (bulk). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Beyer, Clara M. (Clara Mortenson). Papers of Clara Mortenson Beyer, 1911-1974 (inclusive). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Miller, Emma Guffey, 1874-1970. Papers, 1833-1975 (bulk: 1884-1972) Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Rogers, Edith Nourse, 1881-1960. Papers, 1854-1961 (inclusive), 1881-1961 (bulk). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Peterson, Esther, 1906-1997. Papers, 1884-1998 (inclusive), 1929-1998 (bulk). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Miller, Emma Guffey, 1874-1970. Papers: Series III-IV, 1900-1972 (inclusive) [microform]. Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Dreier, Mary E. (Mary Elisabeth), 1875-1965. Papers, 1797-1968 (bulk 1897-1968) Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
creatorOf Miller, Frieda S. Papers, 1909-1973 (inclusive), 1929-1967 (bulk). Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America‏
referencedIn Bondfield, Margaret, 1873-1953. Margaret Grace Bondfield papers, 1854-1951, 1898-1951 (bulk). Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Abbott, Grace, 1878-1939. person
associatedWith Acheson, Dean, 1893-1971. person
associatedWith American Association of University Women. corporateBody
associatedWith Angela R. Parisi person
correspondedWith Armstrong, George Alexander person
associatedWith Bernays, Doris Fleischman, 1891- person
associatedWith Beyer, Clara M. (Clara Mortenson) person
associatedWith Bolton, Frances Payne, 1885- person
correspondedWith Bondfield, Margaret person
associatedWith Bondfield, Margaret G. person
associatedWith Brandeis, Louis Dembitz, 1856-1941. person
correspondedWith Buchanan, Lucille person
associatedWith Bunche, Ralph J. (Ralph Johnson), 1904-1971. person
associatedWith Burlingham, Charles C., 1858-1959. person
associatedWith Byrnes, James F., 1906-1972 person
associatedWith Carrie (Ashton) Johnson, 1863- person
associatedWith Christman, Elisabeth, 1881-1975. person
associatedWith Christman, Elisabeth, ? -1975 person
associatedWith Clara Williams de Junge person
associatedWith Cohn, Fannia, 1888-1962. person
associatedWith Consumers' League of Massachusetts. corporateBody
associatedWith Cripps, Isobel. person
correspondedWith Dan Q. R. Mulock Houwer person
associatedWith Dingman, Mary A., 1875-1961. person
correspondedWith Dju Yu Bao person
associatedWith Dodd, Alvin E. person
associatedWith Doris (Fleischman) Bernays, 1892-1980 person
associatedWith Douglas, William O. (William Orville), 1898-1980. person
associatedWith Dreier, Mary Elisabeth, 1875-1963 person
associatedWith Dreier, Mary E. (Mary Elisabeth), 1875-1963. person
correspondedWith Drew, Jane B. person
associatedWith Dubinsky, David, 1892-1982. person
associatedWith EDITH NOURSE ROGERS, 1881-1960 person
associatedWith Edwards, India. person
associatedWith Eisenhower, Dwight D. (Dwight David), 1890-1969. person
correspondedWith Eleanor M. Hinder person
associatedWith Electrical Association for Women. corporateBody
associatedWith Elliot, Katherine, 1905- person
associatedWith Emma (Guffey) Miller, 1874-1970 person
correspondedWith Fabian Society corporateBody
associatedWith Frankfurter, Felix, 1882-1965. person
associatedWith Frank, Walter, 1882-1969. person
associatedWith Friends of Alliance. corporateBody
associatedWith Goldmark, Josephine, 1877-1950 person
associatedWith Goodrich, Carter, 1897- person
associatedWith Goodrich, Carter, 1897-1971. person
associatedWith Gray, Herman A. person
associatedWith Gray, Herman A. person
correspondedWith Greenberg, Leonard person
correspondedWith Hamilton, Mary Agnes person
correspondedWith Hartley, Harold person
associatedWith Haslett, Caroline. person
associatedWith Herrick, Elinore Morehouse, 1895-1964. person
associatedWith Hillman, Sidney, 1887-1946. person
associatedWith Hoffman, Anna Rosenberg, 1902-1983. person
associatedWith International Alliance of Women. corporateBody
associatedWith International Confederation of Free Trade Unions. corporateBody
associatedWith International Confederation of Trade Unions corporateBody
associatedWith International Council of Women. corporateBody
associatedWith International Labor Organization corporateBody
associatedWith International Labour Organisation. corporateBody
associatedWith International Ladies Garment Workers' Union corporateBody
associatedWith International Ladies Garment Workers' Union. corporateBody
associatedWith International Union for Child Welfare. corporateBody
associatedWith International Union of Child Welfare corporateBody
associatedWith Jeffrey, Mildred, 1911- person
associatedWith Johnson, Carrie Ashton, 1863- person
associatedWith Johnson, Ethel M., 18?? - person
associatedWith Johnson, Ethel McLean, 1882-1978. person
associatedWith Judd, Orrin G. person
associatedWith Judd, Orrin G. person
associatedWith Keller, Helen, 1880-1968. person
associatedWith Kenyon, Dorothy, 1888-1972 person
associatedWith Keyserling, Mary Dublin, 1910- person
associatedWith La Guardia, Fiorello H. (Fiorello Henry), 1882-1947. person
associatedWith Lehman, Herbert H. (Herbert Henry), 1878-1963. person
associatedWith Lenroot, Katherine F., 1891- person
associatedWith Lenroot, Katherine F. (Katharine Fredrica), 1891-1982. person
associatedWith L. F. Nettlefold person
correspondedWith Marconnier, Emily Sims person
correspondedWith MARTHA (RAGSDALE) RAGLAND, 1906-1996 person
associatedWith MARY ELISABETH DREIER, 1875-1963 person
associatedWith Mayo, Leonard W., 1899- person
correspondedWith Mazumdar, Shudha person
associatedWith Miller, Emma Guffey, 1874-1970. person
correspondedWith Moser, Audrey person
correspondedWith Nagler, Isadore person
correspondedWith N. A. Howell-Everson person
associatedWith National Association of Business and Professional Women's Clubs. corporateBody
associatedWith National Committee on Household Employment. corporateBody
associatedWith National Institute of Houseworkers. corporateBody
associatedWith National Institute of Houseworkers Ltd. corporateBody
associatedWith National Women's Trade Union League of America corporateBody
associatedWith Newman, Pauline. person
associatedWith Newman, Pauline, ca. 1895- person
associatedWith New York Department of Labor corporateBody
associatedWith New York. Dept. of Labor. corporateBody
associatedWith New York House and School of Industry. Vocational Training Project. corporateBody
associatedWith New York Women's Trade Union League corporateBody
associatedWith Parisi, Angela R., 1914-1961. person
correspondedWith PAULINE M NEWMAN, ca. 1890- person
associatedWith PAULINE NEWMAN, 1888-1986 person
correspondedWith Paul, R. B. person
associatedWith Perkins, Frances, 1880-1965 person
associatedWith Perkins, Frances, 1882-1965. person
associatedWith Peterson, Esther, 1906-1997. person
associatedWith Peterson, Esther Eggertsen, 1906- person
associatedWith Peterson, Esther Eggertsen, 1906-1997 person
correspondedWith Petronella M. Hage person
associatedWith Pickett, Clarence E., 1884-1965. person
associatedWith Poletti, Charles, 1903-2002. person
associatedWith Polier, Justine, 1903- person
associatedWith Polier, Justine Wise, 1903-1987 person
associatedWith Ragland, Martha Ragsdale, 1906-1996. person
correspondedWith Reading, Stella person
correspondedWith Reed, Phillip person
associatedWith Reuther, Walter, 1907-1970. person
correspondedWith Rich, Ruby person
correspondedWith Riegelman, Carol person
associatedWith Rogers, Edith Nourse, 1881-1960. person
correspondedWith Rogers, Lindsay person
correspondedWith Roosevelt, Eleanor person
associatedWith Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962. person
associatedWith Roosevelt, Franklin Delano jr., 1914- person
correspondedWith Russell Sage College corporateBody
associatedWith Saunders, Cecilia Cabaniss, 1883-1966. person
associatedWith Schneiderman, Rose, 1882-1972. person
associatedWith Sichrova, Elizabeth person
associatedWith Sichrova, Elizabeth. person
correspondedWith Smith, Viola person
correspondedWith Stebbins, Henry person
associatedWith Stewart, Maxwell, 1900- person
associatedWith Stewart, Maxwell S. (Maxwell Slutz), 1900-1990. person
associatedWith Stitt, Louise. person
associatedWith Strauss, Anna Lord, 1899-1979. person
associatedWith Truman, Harry S., 1884-1973 person
associatedWith UNICEF. corporateBody
associatedWith United Nations. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Department of Labor. Women's Bureau corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Women's Bureau. corporateBody
associatedWith US Department of State corporateBody
associatedWith Wagner, Robert F., 1910- person
correspondedWith Walpole, Stanely person
associatedWith Winant, John C., 1899-1947 person
associatedWith Women's Trade Union League of New York. corporateBody
associatedWith Wood, Ethel Mary person
correspondedWith Wright, Ralph person
associatedWith Young, Louise Merwin, 1903- person
associatedWith Young Women's Christian Association corporateBody
associatedWith YWCA. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Milwaukee WI US
La Crosse WI US
New York City NY US
Philadelphia PA US
Subject
Women in the civil service
Labor laws and legislation
Women--Employment
Women in public life
Labor
Labor and laboring classes
Carrie Chapman Catt Memorial Fund
Friendship
Women--Employment--Biography
Children--Employment
International cooperation
International agencies
Occupation
Labor administrators
Activity

Person

Birth 1889-04-16

Death 1973-07-21

Female

Americans

English

Information

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Ark ID: w64g2g64

SNAC ID: 85565602