Side A: James Norris Gamble, entrepreneur, industrialist, philanthropist and civic leader, is best known for inventing Procter & Gamble’s Ivory Soap, the “soap that floats,” in 1878. Applying a scientific approach, Gamble transformed P&G into a nationally recognized corporate leader and creator of consumer products for a rapidly growing America. Beyond P&G, Gamble financed early efforts to educate freed southern slaves as an original sponsor of the Freedmen’s Aid Society. Later, he underwrote civil rights leader Mary McLeod Bethune’s work to educate poor African American women. In Cincinnati, Gamble’s philanthropy included endowment of Christ Hospital and the founding of its Institute of Medical Research. Gamble funded completion of University of Cincinnati’s Nippert Stadium in 1924 as a tribute to his late grandson.
Side B: James Norris Gamble’s imprint on Westwood continues to present day. In 1871, Gamble moved to his estate at 2918 Werk Road in the Village of Westwood with his wife Margaret Penrose. A steward of his community, Gamble served eight consecutive terms as Village Councilman from 1871-1889, during which time Westwood Town Hall was erected. Elected Westwood’s last mayor in 1894, he guided the village through annexation with Cincinnati in 1896. Gamble resurrected the Cincinnati & Westwood Railroad until streetcars reached the village. Together, he and his wife planted trees throughout the community to beautify Westwood. Gamble named his Werk Road estate “Ratonagh” after his family’s ancestral Irish home, living there until his death. Gamble’s home was razed in 2013.