The mother of the glamorous Dominique Deveraux was the poor black dressmaker for millionaire Tom Carrington Laura Matthews. Laura came to work for the Carringtons when they moved to Colorado from Pennsylvania. Tom's wife Ellen was in failing health, and he became attracted to Laura. The two became lovers, and Laura became pregnant. When Tom refused to take responsibility for his actions, Laura left with their daughter, Millie. Laura got married, so her daughter would have a name (Cox). Laura and Tom never saw each other again, but they continued to correspond via letters. When Laura died she charged her sister Bessie with these letters for safekeeping. Although Tom never saw Laura again, he did come to her brother Charles and his wife Jane once and asked them to keep some important documents for him. Unfortunately, neither Laura never saw the beautiful and elegant woman plain Millie Cox grew into -- Dominique Deveraux.