Cultural contributions recognized, page 2

    Mother Joseph (Esther Pariseau), was the Northwest's first architect.
    She was born in 1823 and learned the art of construction from her father, a French-Canadian carriage maker.

Mother Joseph

    At age 20, she entered the Sisters of Providence convent near Montreal.
    The Sisters of Providence inherited its first Washington state convent in Seattle in 1857. Mother Joseph remodeled the convent, designed and built a chapel and constructed six cabins for orphans.
    In 1861 she was appointed to build a hospital in Seattle. It took 12 years to construct the three-story, two-acre building. At that time it was the largest brick building in the state.
    She opened the first Sisters of Providence institution for the mentally ill in Vancouver, Wash. in 1866, and in 1875 she opened a hospital in Portland.
    Until her death in 1902, Mother Joseph was committed to helping orphans, the sick and the mentally ill.

    Hazel Pete is well-known as a basketweaver and for her beadwork and cattail matting. Her baskets are sold worldwide.
    Pete was born in 1916 and is a member of the Chehalis Tribe.

Hazel Pete

    She has traveled to schools to teach her craft and to share the artifacts of her heritage. She is involved with her tribe's historical society and is heralded for her knowledge of the historic background of her tribe.

    Dixy Lee Ray was governer of Washington State from 1977 to 1981.
    She was born in Tacoma in 1914.
    After teaching public school, Ray returned to college, and in 1945 she earned a doctorate in marine biology from Stanford University.

Dixy Lee Ray

    She directed the Pacific Science Center in Seattle and the graduate research program at the University of Washington for the next 25 years.
    In 1972 Richard Nixon appointed Ray the first woman to chair the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission. After leaving the AEC, she served as Assistant Secretary of State overseeing the Bureau of Oceans, International Environment and Scientific Affairs.
    She was outspoken in defense of the nuclear industry and wrote two books, Trashing the Planet and Environmental Overkill.
    She died in 1994.

    Merce Cunningham is recognized as one of the country's most influential choreographers.
    He was born in Centralia in the 1920s. He began dancing at age 8, and later attended Miss Nellie Cornish's School for Performing and Visual Arts in Seattle.

Merce Cunningham

    From 1939 to 1944 he was principal soloist in Martha Graham's Troupe and in 1953, at Black Mountain College, he formed his own company. The Merce Cunningham Dance Company has been performing throughout the world ever since.
    In 1982 he was made Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters by the French Minister of Culture, and in 1984 he was inducted into the American Academy and Institution of Arts and Letters.

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