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Henriette and Henriette: The Life of a Woman

Helena Budzynska Mietka, Author
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Henriette Alice McCrea

Henriette Alice McCrea was born into a wealthy Chicago family in 1888, and at a young age was taken to Paris, allowing French to become her native tongue. Henriette grew up to be an avid fan of theater, and she collected a vast collection of autographs and memorabilia. Though she spent some time back in America, where she married and divorced twice, in 1928 she moved to Paris, where she fell in love with Thelma Wood, a famous lesbian sculptor, who at the time was in a relationship with the novelist Djuna Barnes. (Flahardy 1). It was a scandal that rocked the Parisian art world. Barnes satirized Henriette in her novel, Nightwood, (click for more information) as the presumptuous and flighty Nora Flood. McCrea traveled to Florence with Wood, where she supported Wood's art studies. In 1934, they moved to live together in Sandy Hook, Connecticut. Henriette challenged the social norms of the time, and did not hide her true affections. 
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