Eileen Marion Jacobson

May 5, 1930 ~ November 12, 2020 (age 90)


Eileen M. Jacobson died on Nov. 12, 2020, after being hospitalized following a long illness near her home in Bethesda, Md. She was 90.

Ms. Jacobson was an artist who made necklaces from glass beads that were sold in boutiques and museum stores around the country. She also created paintings from dried and pressed flowers.

She was born in New York City and grew up in both the city and in Woodmere, Long Island. Her father was a businessman, and her mother was a homemaker. Ms. Jacobson earned her undergraduate degree, magna cum laude, in radio and television from the University of Miami, where she met her future husband, Raymond M. Jacobson, who was then a law student at the university.

The two met while standing in line to return used textbooks for cash. Mr. Jacobson had earlier noticed her through the window of the campus broadcast studio, and they struck up a conversation about Mr. Jacobson’s alligator-design undergraduate class ring from the University of Florida.

Ms. Jacobson had to leave, so she asked Mr. Jacobson to complete the transaction for her. They dated through Mr. Jacobson’s military service in South Korea and were married in 1955 after moving to Washington, D.C.

In Washington, Ms. Jacobson worked for the Democratic National Committee, in the advertising business, and in publicity for the Washington Post.

At the Post, she was believed to be the first woman to regularly attend the newspaper’s daily editors’ meetings, led by James Russell Wiggins and Alfred Friendly, the Post’s top two editors. She was responsible for writing advance promotions of articles by the newspaper’s staff.

In 1980, when Mr. Jacobson was promoted to brigadier general in the Army Reserve in a ceremony at the Pentagon, Ms. Jacobson pinned the star on his uniform, and Mr. Jacobson presented her with a necklace with a gold star and diamond, which she wore frequently for the rest of her life.

Ms. Jacobson had always been artistic, and she took up art increasingly as she grew older. The couple would travel often to obtain beads and other pieces made of glass. She would use these to create one-of-a-kind necklaces that were sold in high-end boutiques. Examples of her work were shown at such venues as the Corning Museum in Corning, N.Y.

She is survived by her husband of 65 years; by their son, Louis A. Jacobson; by her daughter-in-law, Elisabeth Layton; and by her grandchildren, Cynthia and Zachary Jacobson, all of Bethesda. Ms. Jacobson’s older sister, Phyllis Eiger, predeceased her.

Due to the coronavirus, the funeral service will be for immediate family.

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