Eleanor Clay Ford
Eleanor Lowthian Clay was born in 1896 to William and Eliza Clay. When Eleanor was twelve, her father died, and she, her mother, and sister Josephine moved in with her uncle, J.L. Hudson, the founder of Hudson's Department Store in Detroit.
From an early age, Eleanor showed an appreciation for the arts and charitable activities, directing much effort towards different causes. As a young woman, Eleanor taught dance lessons to underprivileged children. It was at this time she met Edsel Ford. The young couple courted for five years before they were married in 1916. Clara Ford once confided to a friend that she and Henry, "could not love Edsel's wife more if we had picked her out ourselves."