Have you shopped in Lee Heights? Visited Lyon Park?
Then you have been to neighborhoods created by real estate developer Ruby Lee Minar.
You can read a short history of Ruby Lee Minar's influential career in Arlington real estate development in our online exhibit, Women's Work. The exhibit includes original documents, which are housed in the Center for Local History's Community Archive.
In the 1920s, entrepreneur Ruby Lee Minar built a real estate empire in and around Arlington. It was so expansive that the American Business Review described her as the “most successful woman in realty development in the country.”
By May 1921, Minar had become the exclusive sales agent for the Lyon Park subdivision owned by Lyon & Fitch. Minar also purchased a 400-acre tract of land between the Washington Golf and Country Club and the Potomac River, which was developed into a subdivision named Lee Heights.
Ruby Lee Minor was a prominent advocate for women’s rights in her roles as first president of the Washington, D.C. Soroptimist Club, a worldwide civic organization for business and professional women. She became the first woman admitted to the Virginia Real Estate Association and went on to be the only woman on the Alexandria-Arlington-Fairfax Real Estate Board.