Mrs. Frank (Miriam) Leslie
Successful Business Woman and Publisher
1836 – 1914 A.D.
“Truth is stranger than fiction.” Mrs. Leslie’slifecontains abundant material for a most fascinating novel. Miriam Florence Folline is a native of New Orleans, La., and is a French Creole by birth. Her girlhood home was one of luxury and her educational advantages and attainments were of the highest order.
Mr. “Frank Leslie,” to whom she was married, was by birth an Englishman and his real name was Henry Carter. He had gained some reputation as an author using the pen name “Frank Leslie.” Coming to this country he took his pen name as his legal name by legislative permission, and became a publisher in New York City.
Miss Folline chanced to be in New York. One of the editors of “Leslie’s Lady’s Magazine” was ill and without money. Miss Folline offered to take the place and give the sick woman the salary, which was done. The invalid died and the benefactress was asked to retain the editorial position. Mr. Leslie came to admire and love this talented woman and they were married.
She was of great assistance to him in his business and they were greatly prospered for some years. But reverses came in the panic of 1877 and Mr. Leslie was obliged to make an assignment. He was about this time afflicted with a tumor, which he would terminate fatally. To his beautiful and brave wife he said, “Go to my office, sit in my place and do my work, until my debts are paid.” When he died, there were debts amounting to $300,000.
By act of legislature she took the name Frank Leslie and carried on the business with pronounced success. That a woman of such business ability, and with heavy responsibilities, should be at the same time a society leader, is a marvel of versatility. She has shone in European society, where she was most cordially received. Her command of the French, Spanish, and Italian languages opened the way, and her personal beauty and culture made her a center of attraction.
Reference: Woman: Her Position, Influence, and Achievement Throughout the Civilized World published by the King-Richardson Co. in 1903.