Families of Aunt Jemima Models Want More Than Just a Brand Change
Aunt Jemima Families of Models ... Want More Than Just a Brand Change
2/11/2021 12:50 AM PT
Aunt Jemima's name and face are now scrubbed from the breakfast products she's fronted for more than a century -- a move in the right direction, but far from enough to do justice to the women who served as her model ... so say their descendants.
Lillian Richard and Anna Short Harrington both served as models for Aunt Jemima at different points in the early 20th century, well before the most recent version with the woman in pearls.
Vera Richard Harris -- Lillian's great-niece -- tells us she wants to see her relative's name (plus the names of all the other models who portrayed Jemima) inscribed on the new Pearl Milling Company packaging, to honor their contributions. She doesn't want cash, just recognition.
Richard Harris says she doesn't want her great-aunt, or any of the other models, to be forgotten ... which is essentially what she thinks has happened with the hard erasure PepsiCo/Quaker have opted for.
Ditto for Wanetta Cowan -- great-granddaughter of Anna -- who says these conglomerates have made a fortune off their family members' images for decades ... and now just wanna act like they never existed. The remedy, in her mind, is simple ... payment for their descendants, in the form of royalties.
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One of Wanetta's cousins actually pursued legal action to that end some years ago, but lost. She elaborated on her thoughts back when the brand change was announced, and it sounds like she thinks they can still do right by them ... by shelling out some cash.