HELEN JACOBS / by Molly Schiot

Helen Jacobs's lasting footnote at Wimbledon is as the first woman to popularize man-tailored shorts as on-court attire. ''It seemed the sensible thing to do,'' she would say later.  Jacobs's admirable courage and fighting qualities earned her nine Grand Slam titles, and a triple crown of singles, doubles and mixed doubles at the 1934 United States Nationals. She was ranked in the world Top 10 for 12 straight times from 1928, was No. 1 in 1936, and was elected to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1962. Jacobs was a commander in United States Navy intelligence in World War II, one of five women in the Navy to achieve the rank of commander. She retired from tennis in 1947 and enjoyed a career as a writer of 19 books, a farmer and a designer of sportswear.Jacobs is survived by her companion, Virginia Gurnee.

Helen Jacobs's lasting footnote at Wimbledon is as the first woman to popularize man-tailored shorts as on-court attire. ''It seemed the sensible thing to do,'' she would say later.  Jacobs's admirable courage and fighting qualities earned her nine Grand Slam titles, and a triple crown of singles, doubles and mixed doubles at the 1934 United States Nationals. She was ranked in the world Top 10 for 12 straight times from 1928, was No. 1 in 1936, and was elected to the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1962. Jacobs was a commander in United States Navy intelligence in World War II, one of five women in the Navy to achieve the rank of commander. She retired from tennis in 1947 and enjoyed a career as a writer of 19 books, a farmer and a designer of sportswear.Jacobs is survived by her companion, Virginia Gurnee.