Stamps on Slovene Female Scientists – Dr. Ana Mayer Kansky -2022

Ana Mayer was born on 20 June 1895 in Lože near Vipava. She was part of the first generation of girls permitted to attend the Classical Gymnasium (an academic secondary school) in Ljubljana. In 1914 she passed the matura (school- leaving examination) and, using money she had earned by selling fruit, set off to university in Vienna, where from 1914 until 1918 she studied chemistry with physics.

Immediately after the First World War, when non-German students were prohibited from studying at the university, she returned to Ljubljana and continued her chemistry studies at the newly founded University of Ljubljana.

In 1920 she defended her dissertation on the effects of formalin on starch. On 15 July of that same year, she became the first woman to earn a PhD from the University of Ljubljana. She later became the first woman to hold an academic post at the University.

In 1921 she married Evgen Kansky, a professor at the Faculty of Medicine in Ljubljana, and left the University. That same year, in Podgrad, a settlement to the east of Ljubljana, the Kanskys established a factory manufacturing sulphuric ether, diethyl ether and other products. It was the first factory of its kind in Yugoslavia. The Kanskys were among the pioneers of the chemical industry in Slovenia in the interwar years. They manufactured ether for anaesthesia, solvents and other complex organic compounds. Trading as Dr. A. Kansky, the business was run by Ana Kansky, while her husband ran the laboratory. The factory was seized by the German occupying forces during the Second World War and then nationalised after the war. Ana Kansky worked as a chemistry teacher until her retirement. She died on 3 November 1962.