Woman of the Century/Lollie Belle Wylie
WYLIE, Mrs. Lollie Belle, journalist and poet, was born at Bayou Coden, near Mobile, Ala. Her maiden name was Moore. From Alabama her parents moved to Arkansas. As the father died when she was five months old, she was reared by her maternal grandfather, William D. Ellis, residing always in Georgia, chiefly in Atlanta. Between that fine old gentleman and herself there existed a congeniality rare and delightful. It was he who fostered in the girl those distinguishing traits for which to-day her friends admire the woman, the tastes and culture which places upon her lifework the crown of success. At seventeen, she became the wife of Hart Wylie. During the next nine years of domestic quiet it never occurred to her that she had talents lying dormant, except for occasional verse written for her own amusement. Those beautiful years of dreaming closed sadly in the lingering illness of the young husband. Want soon thrust its shadow across the threshold of the home. What to do to protect from need those three dearest to her, husband and two baby girls, was the problem presented for solution. She could think of no talent, no gilt of hers that might be turned to account, save her little verses. The sudden thought brought help. The waifs were quickly collected, and a friendly publisher agreed to bring out the small book. Several hundred volumes were immediately sold, paying the expenses of publication and relieving the pressing necessities of the household, but the first copy was placed on the young wife's desk while the husband lay sleeping through death's earliest hour. Two days later Mr. Hoke Smith, president of the Atlanta "Journal." offered her the place of society editor on his paper. She took up the work at once, and at once succeeded. Her first "write up" was of the reception given to President and Mrs. Cleveland in Atlanta, and filled seven columns LOLLIE BELLE WYLIE. of the paper. Having filled that place most satisfactorily for three years, and having refused several offers from papers north and south, the dauntless woman, now well known in her profession and vice-president of the Woman's Press Club of Georgia, decided, in December, 1890. to have her own organ of her opinion. In ten days after the decision there appeared the first issue of "Society," a weekly publication under her editorship. It was immediately successful.