Nellie Bly

(born Elizabeth Jane Cochrane)



Nellie Bly was considered the "best reporter in America" according to the New York Journal. She became a pioneer in journalism and investigative reporting for Joesph Pulitzer's New York World in the 1880's and 1890's. Nellie Bly worked for the Pittsburgh Dispatch, New York World, and the New York Journal. Nellie Bly is most famous for traveling around the world in 72 days, 6 hours, and 11 minutes. In 1888, Bly spent 10 days in a mental hospital on Blackwell's Island in NYC for a story. She was trying to gather information on the treatment of patients. The mistreatment of patients was on the front page of the New York World. Eventually, the insane asylum was shut down, and the care of the mentally ill was reformed. Bly was married in 1895 to Robert Seaman. At this time, she retired from journalism. After her husband's death, Bly started a new career by taking over her husbands failing industries. She made these industries a success by introducing the steel barrel to the distilling process in America. For ten years, Bly managed two multimillion dollar companies. She treated her workers very well, providing them with gymnasiums, bowling allies, and health care. Bly encouraged mental fitness by providing staffed libraries to teach employee's how to read and pass exams for diplomas so that they could enjoy intellectual pursuits and improve their lives. After retiring as a business woman, Bly was trapped in Europe as WWI began. However, she used her skills as a reporter to cover the war from the European front. Bly was a model of progress and achievement as a researcher, reporter, industrialist, and a reformer for women of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

For more information:

National Women's Hall of Fame

Nellie Bly Amusement Park

Nellie Bly: The best reporter in America