Frances WisebartJacobs

Francis Weisbart Jacobs helped transform the fledgling state of Colorado through her organization of charities and hospitals. In 1870, Jacobs settled in what would later become Denver, organizing the Hebrew Ladies’ Relief Society and the Denver Ladies’ Relief Society, a free kindergarten, and the Charity Organization Society, which collected money from local businesses to support community projects. A compelling speaker, she addressed national conventions and acted as spokesperson for the organizations she created, becoming known as Denver’s “mother of charities.” Jacobs also worked with the hundreds of tuberculosis patients who came to Colorado hoping the dry air and sunshine might provide a cure. While she began by simply offering basic necessities and checking in on the sick, Jacobs quickly moved to establish a hospital for them. Through her efforts, the Jewish Hospital Association bought land and began constructing a sanatorium in 1892, laying the cornerstone one month before her death. The hospital was named in her honor upon its completion.


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Volunteer, social worker, and founder of Hebrew Ladies’ Relief Society and the Denver Ladies’ Relief Society, Frances Wisebart Jacobs (1843–1892).

Image courtesy of Beck Archives, Special Collections, Penrose Library and CJS, University of Denver. This image is in the public domain.

Date of Birth

Harrodsburg, KY
United States

Date of Death

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Frances Wisebart Jacobs." (Viewed on November 18, 2019) <>.


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