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Marlatt, Abby Lindsey (1916-2010) | Morse Department of Special Collections

Name: Marlatt, Abby Lindsey (1916-2010)


Historical Note:

Abby Lindsey Marlatt, daughter of Frederick and Annie Marlatt, was born on 5 December 1916 in Manhattan, Kansas. She was the granddaughter of Manhattan settler Washington Marlatt and the niece of Abby Lillian Marlatt.  Abby Lindsey Marlatt graduated from Kansas State College (KSC) in 1938 with a degree in home economics and dietetics. In 1941, she earned a certificate in hospital dietetics from the University of California at Berkeley and continued her education there, eventually earning her Ph.D. in nutrition and food science in 1947.

In 1943, Abby Lindsey Marlatt donated a cookbook collection of 600 volumes to KSC that included titles owned by Abby Lillian Marlatt. This collection was the start of the Kansas State University Libraries' extensive cookery collection.

By 1945 Marlatt had accepted a position as associate professor in the Department of Food Economics and Nutrition at KSC. Her research focused on nutrition and dietary habits of school children. She was a visiting professor during the 1953–1954 academic year at the Beirut College for Women in Lebanon. In 1956, she became head of the Home Economics department at the University of Kentucky.

Abby was personally involved in civil rights issues. She helped form the Lexington chapter of the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE) and was involved in other organizations that included the Lexington Committee on Religion and Human Rights, Community Action Council, and Unitarian Universalist Church. Her activism influenced her demotion from the department head position in the 1960s. She retired from the University of Kentucky in 1985, the same year she received the Sullivan Medallion and the Brotherhood Award in recognition of her devotion to civil rights and social justice.

Marlatt was inducted into the Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame in July 2001. She died on 3 March 2010 in Lexington, Kentucky.

Sources: Vertical file and online sources.
Note Author: James Smith





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