Persis Foster Eames Albee (Persis Foster Eames Albee)

Persis Foster Eames Albee

She was known as the “First Avon Lady”. In 1886 became the first saleswoman for the California Perfume Company, a business that eventually became the multi-billion dollar Avon Products, Incorporated. She started selling the company’s products in 1886 door-to-door, and rose to become the chief of sales for the business. It was her idea to recruit women to go door-to-door selling the products, emulating her successful practice, which gave rise to the “Avon Lady”.

Founder David H. McConnell handpicked Mrs. Persis Foster Eames Albee to become the company’s first Representative and affectionately dubbed her the “Mother of the California Perfume Company.” Mrs. P.F.E. Albee of New Hampshire was 50 when she began selling perfumes for McConnell. She traveled by horse and buggy and by train, offering perfumes such as the inaugural single-note scents – Violet, White Rose, Heliotrope, Lily-of-the-Valley and Hyacinth – door-to-door throughout the Northeast section of the United States. In a letter to McConnell, Mrs. Albee wrote, “I know of no line of work so lucrative, pleasant and satisfactory as this.” The legendary Mrs. Albee is still considered a role model for Avon Representatives today and is credited with creating the company’s system for distributing products.

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