Helen Boehm (Helen Boehm)

Helen Boehm

Businesswoman. Called the “Princess of Porcelain”, she was co-founder of a Trenton, New Jersey, company producing high-end figurines which have been seen the world over. Born Elena Francesca Stephanie Franzolin, she was trained as a dressmaker and later as an optician. Married to veterinary assistant Edward Boehm in 1944, she joined with her husband in 1950 to borrow $1,000 and found E.M. Boehm Studios. With Mr. Boehm serving as the sculptor and Mrs. Boehm running the marketing, the pair began selling their predominantly wildlife and floral creations to eager buyers. As early as 1951, the Metropolitan Museum of Art had two Boehm pieces in their collection; the sculptures have been given to and by every Pope since Pius XII and, thanks to a sales approach made by Mrs. Boehm, every US President since Eisenhower. Continuing to run her business following Mr. Boehm’s death, Mrs. Boehm supervised the creation of a copy of Princess Diana’s wedding boquet (and white roses to mark her death in 1997), as well as special gifts for numerous heads of state. She personally oversaw a 1987 exhibit in Moscow and the 1992 dedication of an E.M. Boehm wing in the Vatican Museum. Her work is the usual official gift of a US President to foreign dignitaries, has been shown in numerous museums, and is on permanent display at the White House, Buckingham Palace, and the Smithsonian. Mrs. Boehm published her autobiography, “With a Little Luck: An American Odyssey”, in 1987 and sold her company in 2003. At her death from cancer and Parkinson’s Disease, the firm she helped build continued in operation. (bio by: Bob Hufford)  Family links:  Spouse:  Edward Marshall Boehm (1913 – 1969)


  • December, 26, 1920
  • USA


  • November, 11, 2010
  • USA


  • Saint Mary's Cemetery
  • USA

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