Juanita Marie Mauras
American Newcomb College Newcomb Enterprise
(New Orleans, LA, 1880 - 1952, New Orleans, LA)
Juanita Marie Mauras was a Newcomb College artist specializing in silversmithing, embroidery and bookbinding.
Born in New Orleans on March 27, 1880, Mauras enrolled at Newcomb 1905-06, graduating in art in 1906-07. Mauras was a member of the exceptionally talented class of 1906, which included Sadie Irvine, Miriam Levy, and Anna Frances Simpson.
In 1910 Mauras wet to Columbia University to further study her craft. She became an expert in booksbinding, creating works made of hand-tooled leather, bound in handmade paper with watercolor decorations and linens with embroidery ornamentation. While in New York, Mauras visited Tiffany’s, which influenced her to experiment in leaded glass.
Mauras served as an Art Craftsman at Newcomb from 1908–1929. First hired by the College in 1922, she is listed as an “Assistant to the Newcomb Pottery” in October 1925. She was later appointed a studio assistant in silversmithing and jewelry and retained this position until her retirement on October 15, 1945.
Featured in a June 6, 1926 article in the Times Picayune on the Pottery enterprise’s metalwork, she is described as “a big woman, with muscular corded arms and large, wellshaped hands . . . She speaks laughingly how her fellow workers refer to her as “the powerful Katrinka.” The article implies that Mauras was the first woman in the South to work in silversmithing.
Juanita Marie Mauras died on October 16, 1952, and is interred in St. Louis Cemetery No. 3.