these successful business women were breaking glass ceilings.
Starting a new business has rarely been an easy endeavor. But throughout much of American history, female entrepreneurs faced especially daunting obstacles. They couldn’t open bank accounts in their own names, obtain a loan—or even vote. Still, some tapped family connections, sussed out unique business opportunities and beat the considerable odds. The businesses these women launched—some of which survived for a century or longer—turned their founders into role models for more contemporary American moguls like Oprah Winfrey and Martha Stewart.
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