Fay C. Martin Optometry Certificate of Examination


Fay C. Martin Optometry Certificate of Examination


A framed examination certificate awarded to optometrist Fay C. Martin, who is believed to be the earliest woman in Oregon to practice optometry. The certificate documents that she "has passed the examination prescribed by the Oregon State Board of Examiners in Optometry" on October 24, 1910. This certificate was issued on September 10, 1923, in lieu of an earlier one that she presumably earned under her maiden name or the name of her first husband. It is numbered #279; is signed by members of the Board of Examiners in Optometry; and includes their seal.

Historical Note: Fay Clara Martin (named in some records as "Clara Fay Martin") was born around 1885 in Idaho. Fay's father was a German immigrant. Sometime in the early 1900s, she married her first husband, whose last name was Beaulieu. She was widowed young, and married her second husband, Henry Martin, in 1915. By 1920, she and her husband were living in Portland, but he was employed as a low-wage laborer doing "street work," while she ran a boarding house out of their home. In 1925, a Portland City Directory listed a "Mrs. Fay C. Martin" as an optometrist, with an address at "303 Raleigh Bldg." The 1930 census also listed her as an Optometrist working in an Optometry Shop in Portland. Her husband, meanwhile, was a shipping clerk in a wholesale hardware store. Fay Martin continued to be listed as an Optometrist in Portland in the 1940 and 1950 censuses. By 1940, she appears to have been running her own private practice. In 1950, she was listed as working in an "Opt. Eye Clinic," apparently supporting both her husband and her brother. Fay died on October 26, 1978 in Portland.

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1 framed document


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Pacific University Museum Collection


Still Image