Smart Girl Stories
Lydia Moss Bradley

Lydia Moss Bradley – Philanthropist

Lydia Moss Bradley was more than just a philanthropist; she was a visionary leader who made significant contributions to both the commercial and charitable sectors. With keen business acumen, she founded and managed various business ventures, from manufacturing to real estate. Yet, despite her many successes, Lydia remained deeply committed to addressing social issues that plagued her community.

Lydia founded various institutions like Bradley University and endowed them with significant sums of money. Still, her true legacy lies in her commitment to fostering a spirit of generosity and service that continues to inspire many today. Lydia Moss Bradley was a trailblazer, leading the way for future generations of women to make a difference in the boardroom and the community.

The Bradley Polytechnic Institute

Lydia Moss Bradley made one of her most lasting contributions by founding The Bradley Polytechnic Institute (now known as the Bradley University) in 1897. This school was founded on the principles of education, service, and growth and continues to uphold these values today. The university provides quality education to thousands of students each year and has become a cornerstone of its community.

Lydia’s Philanthropy

In addition to founding The Bradley Polytechnic Institute, Lydia donated millions of dollars to various causes throughout her lifetime. She established foundations for numerous charities and organizations, including hospitals, churches, libraries, museums, and animal shelters. She also served on multiple boards over the years and provided financial assistance to those in need. Her generosity was truly remarkable!

Business Success of Lydia Moss Bradley

Lydia Moss Bradley was no stranger to success in business either. Through investments in banking, insurance, utility companies, and more, she earned considerable wealth – increasing her own personal wealth and that of the surrounding communities by creating jobs for others. Her business acumen allowed her to thrive financially while still providing ample opportunity for those around her.

Lydia Moss Bradley had an incredible impact on both local and global communities during her lifetime. From donating millions of dollars towards charitable causes to founding an institution dedicated to higher learning, she will undoubtedly continue to be remembered for years to come as one of history’s greatest female entrepreneurs and philanthropists!

Today we can honor Lydia’s legacy by following in her footsteps and giving back however we can! By doing so, we can pay tribute to this amazing woman who did so much good during her time here with us!

We are proud to highlight this story as part of our partnership with The National Women’s Hall of Fame.

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Founder, Smart Girl, Survivor, Champion of womens rights and kids rights


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