New Donations

In 2011, Geline Bowman Williams (who served as mayor of Richmond from 1988 to 1990) gave this framed collage related to the 25th anniversary of the Expert Letter Writing Company, owned by her mother John-Geline MacDonald Bowman (1890-1946). Bowman purchased the company in 1923, expanded it, and by 1941, made it the third largest direct mail advertising company in the south. She operated Expert Letter Writing until she died in 1946.What types of things do people donate to the History Center’s collection? Here’s an example:

25th Anniversary of Expert Letter Writing Corporation
1941
Collage
V.2011.25.01
Gift of Geline Bowman Williams

In 2011, Geline Bowman Williams (who served as mayor of Richmond from 1988 to 1990) gave this framed collage related to the 25th anniversary of the Expert Letter Writing Company, owned   by her mother John-Geline MacDonald Bowman (1890-1946). Bowman purchased the company in 1923, expanded it, and by 1941, made it the third largest direct mail advertising company in the south. She operated Expert Letter Writing until she died in 1946.

Bowman was active in establishing business and professional organizations for Virginia women, including the Virginia Bureau of Vocations for Women, the Business Women’s Club of Richmond, the Virginia Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Club, and served as president of the National Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs.

Expert Letter Writing stayed in the Bowman family and later became Expert Graphics. In 1990, the family sold it to the William Byrd Press.

The Library of Virginia named John-Geline MacDonald Bowman one of its 2006 Virginia Women in History.

Donations like this collage help us to document countless Richmond stories.

If you are interested in making a donation, please visit Donate an Object.

Meg Hughes
Interim Director of Collections & Interpretation
Valentine Richmond History Center