Ivy Stranahan was born in White Springs on the Suwannee River, she came to Broward County by wagon in 1899 with her family.
After marrying Frank Stranahan in 1900 she moved to the Indian trading post he founded. She spent much of her life serving as an intermediary between the Seminoles Indians and the white society growing around them. She taught Seminole Indians for 15 years informally, and worked to create income-producing systems for Seminole women by introducing their first sewing machines.
Video on Ivy Stranahan’s impact on the Seminole Indians: Ivy Stranahan and the “Friends of the Seminoles”
She was a women ahead of her time in many ways. When Stranahan’s husband committed suicide during the Depression. she converted her home into a restaurant, and even took a course in real estate law to help defend herself against the seizure of all Stranahan properties. She served as the president of the state suffrage league in 1917, she lobbied in legislature for the right of women to vote.
Ivy J.C. Stranahan was inducted into the Women’s Hall of Fame in 1996. The Stranahan House, a Fort Lauderdale museum, preserves her memory today.
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