|Guide to the Women's History Sources
in the Oberlin College Archives
Kirwin Adams, Alexandra Weil, and Roland M. Baumann, Compilers
Roland M. Baumann, Editor
Gertrude F. Jacob Archival Publications Fund
Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio 1990
Dedicated to Gertrude F. Jacob
Oberlin College Class of 1929
RECORDS OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES (Group
 Records of the Board of Trustees,
1833-1978, 44 Ft.
RECORDS OF THE PRESIDENTS (Group
 Papers of
Charles G. Finney, 1817-1875, 4 ft. 6 in.
 Papers of James Harris Fairchild, 1835-1903, 12 ft. 3
 Papers of Henry Churchill King, 1897-1934, 58 ft. 2 in.
 Papers of Ernest Hatch Wilkins, 1927 (1927-46) -1953,
 Papers of William E. Stevenson, 1926 (1946-59) -1960,
48 ft. 3 in.
 Papers of Robert K. Carr, 1925 (1960-70) -1977, 27 ft.
 Papers of Robert W. Fuller, 1970-1974, 11 ft. 2 in.
RECORDS OF THE PRESIDENTIAL ASSISTANTS (Group
 Papers of William F. Bohn, 1910
(1913-44) -1953, 20 ft. 6 in.
 Papers of Charles Whiting Williams, 1904-1912, 5 ft.
 Papers of Harold S. Wood, 1942 (1944-48) -1953, 2 ft.
 Papers of Bayley F. Mason, 1971-1974. 4 ft. 7 in.
RECORDS OF THE OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY (Group
 Records of the Office of the
Secretary, 1860-1973, 86 ft.
RECORDS OF THE OFFICE OF THE TREASURER (Group
 Records of the Office of the
Treasurer, 1822-1950, 50ft.
RECORDS OF THE COLLEGE OF ARTS AND SCIENCES
 Records of the Department of
Physical Education for Women, 1886-1963, 11.3 ft.
 Records of the Women's Studies Program, 1974-1989,
RECORDS OF THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY
 Records of the Graduate School
of Theology, 1841-1966, 28ft.
RECORDS OF THE DEAN OF STUDENTS (Group
 Records of the Dean of Students,
1935 (1967-82)-1985, 29ft. 9in.
RECORDS OF THE OBERLIN SHANSI MEMORIAL ASSOCIATION
 Records of the Oberlin Shansi
Memorial Association, 1881-1987, 44 ft. 6 in.
RECORDS OF THE OBERLIN COLLEGE LIBRARY (Group
 Records of the Oberlin College
Library, 1815 (1950-75) -1988, 25 ft.
RECORDS OF THE PUBLIC RELATIONS DEPARTMENT
 Records of the Centennial
of Coeducation, 1936-37, 2 ft. 7 in.
RECORDS OF STUDENT LIFE (Group
 Records of the Oberlin Band
of Student Volunteers for Foreign Missions, c. 1886-1927, 2 in.
 Records of the Young Women's Missionary Society,
1879-1894, 2 in.
 Records of the Ladies' Literary Society, 1850 (1904-52)-1952,
1 ft. 2 in.
 Records of the Women's Center, 1971-1987, 10 in.
 Records of the Oberlin Association of Women Students,
1958-1966, 2 in.
 Records of the Oberlin Peace Society, 1930-1940, 8 in.
 Scrapbooks and DiariesPapers, 1864-1936, 9 ft.
 Student NotesPapers, 1860-1907, 2 ft. 6 in.
 Records of the Mock Conventions, 1936-1968, 10 ft.
RECORDS OF THE ALUMNI ASSOCIATION (Group
 Records of the Alumni Association,
1839-1990, 42 ft.
RECORDS OF THE OBERLIN FILE, WRITINGS BY AND
ABOUT (Group 21)
 Records of the Oberlin File,
Writings By and About, 1833-1988, 8 ft. 3 in.
RECORDS OF THE OBERLIN KINDERGARTEN AND PRIMARY-TRAINING
SCHOOL (Group 24)
 Records of the Oberlin Kindergarten
and Primary-Training School, 1894-1933, 9 ft. 3 in.
RECORDS OF THE YOUNG WOMEN'S CHRISTIAN
ASSOCIATION (Group 29)
 Records of the Young Women's
Christian Association, 1899 (1940-58) -1962, 6 ft. 9 in.
PAPERS OF OTHER INDIVIDUALS (Group
Papers of George A Adams, 1846-1903, 9 in.
 Diaries of Phoebe Haynes Ainsworth, 1863-1875, 2 in.
 Papers of Kathryn Reinhard Albrecht, 1928-1948, 4 in.
 Papers of George Nelson Allen, 1820-1894, 1 ft. 2 in.
 Genealogy of Archibald McCullum Ball and Sarah A. Curtis
Ball, compiled 1956-1960, 3 in.
 Papers of Willard L. Beard, 1910-1925, 2 ½ in.
 Papers of Dan Beach Bradley, 1800-1888, 1960s, 1 ft.
 Papers of Anna Ruth Brummett, 1957-1985, 2 ft. 10 in.
 Papers of Ellsworth C. Carlson, 1939-1981, 1 ft. 10 in.
 Papers of Henry G. Carpenter, 1842-1933, 5 in.
 Papers of Paul Leaton Corbin, 1904-1936, 7 ft.
 Papers of Carolyn Corwin, 1970-1971, 3 in.
 Papers of Kirke L. and Mary Cowdery, 1890-1935, 2 in.
 Papers of Betsy Mix Cowles, 1835-1868, 2 in.
 Papers of Henry Cowles, 1824-1908, 2 ft. 9 in.
 Papers of Mary Elizabeth Rodhouse Creglow, 1909-1963,
 Papers of Olive Bell Daniels, 1909-1981, 1 ft. 3 in.
 Papers of Francis H. Dart, 1904-1935, 6 in.
 Papers of Mr. and Mrs. Francis (Lydia Lord) Davis, 18621944,
 Papers Frances T. Densmore, 1884-1904, 2 in.
 Records of the Directors' Association of Oberlin
College, 1904-1964, 2 in.
 Papers of Ruth Easton, 1952-1958, 1 ½ in.
 Papers of the Eddy Family, 1805-1919, 2 in.
 Papers of Helen Estabrook, 1923-1950s, 2.5 in.
 Papers of Florence Fitch, 1807-1951, 7 ft.
 Papers of Robert S. Fletcher, 1833-195S, 7 ft. 6 in.
 Letters of Lewis and Lois Gilbert, 1925-1941, 10 in.
 Papers of Amy J. Gittler, 1982-83, ½ in.
 Papers of Elliot F. Grabill, 1859-1901, 10 in.
 Records of the Grand Army of the Republic, Henry Lincoln
Post #364, 1883-1934, 1 ft. 3 in.
 Papers of Charles Martin Hall, c.1863 (1882-1914) -1930s,
 Papers of Lyman B. Hall, 1871-1918, 1 ft. 11 in.
 Papers of Everett D. Hawkins, 1927-1972, 3 ft.
 Papers of Karl Florien Heiser, 1920-1975, 1 ft. 8 in.
 Papers of Hope Hibbard, 1913 (1928-43) -1988, 10 in.
 Papers of Frances Juliette Hosford, 1925-1935, 3 in.
 Papers of Sara L. Houston, c. 1954-1970, 1 ft. 6 in.
 Papers of Gertrude F. Jacob, 1931-1982, 1 ft. 3 in.
 Papers of Adelia A. Field Johnston, 1863-1911, (1974),
 Papers of Mary Elizabeth Johnston, 1880-1982, 4 ft.
 Papers of George T. Jones, (1839) 1865-1990, 5 ft. 2
 Papers of Elizabeth Kadelbach, 1914-15, 2 ½ in.
 Papers of Lucy Fletcher Kellogg, c. 1835-1900, 2 ¼
 Letters of Leonard and Julia King, 1852-1878, 2 in.
 Papers of Daniel C. Kinsey, 1922-1970, 5 ft. 10 in.
 Papers of Ellen NicKenzie Lawson, 1972-1988, 8 in.
 Papers of Ellen NicKenzie Lawson and Marlene D. Merrill,
1977-1984, 3 ft.
 Papers of Fred E. Leonard, 1821-1950, 16 ft. 8 in.
 Papers of Betty Lind, 1966-1973, ½ in.
 Papers of the Misses Alice and Elizabeth Little, 1853-1949,
 Letters of Grace E. McConnaughey, 1910-1928, 5 in.
 Papers of Fred H. ("Tip") Maddock, 1839-1950,
7 ½ in.
 Papers of August Meier, 1941-1945, 5 in.
 Papers of Irving W. Metcalf, 1878-1935, 2 ft. 5 in.
 Papers of William L. Mezger, 1965-1978, 2 in.
 Papers of Margaret Portia Mickey, 1914-1940, 6 in.
 Papers of Charles E. Monroe, 1875-1936, 2 in.
 Papers of Julia Finney Monroe, 1838-1921, 7 ½ in.
 Papers of Charles A. Mosher, 1836-1984, 9 in.
 Papers of John Herbert Nichols, 1908-1974, 9 ft. 10 in.
 Papers of Susan Wealthy Orvis, c. 1924-1939, 10 in.
 Papers of Donald J. Pease, 1971-1986, 135 ft.
 Papers of Chauncy N. Pond, 1892-1916, 1 ft.
 Papers of the Prudden Family, 1836-37, 2 in.
 Papers of Azariah Smith Root, 1881-1931, 7 ft. 1 in.
 Papers of Margaret R. Schauffler, 1915-1960, 3 in.
 Memoirs of John S. and Caroline S. Service, 1976-1978,
 Papers of Mabel Louise Shaw, 1906-1909, 5 in.
 Papers of Mary Sheldon, 1842-1853, 2 in.
 Papers of John Jay Shipherd, 1806 1860, 7 in.
 Papers of Gives W. Shurtleff, 1846-1924, 2 ft. 11 in.
 Papers of A. Clair Siddall, M.D., 1930-1980, 10 in.
 Papers of Lloyd W. and Esther Bliss Taylor, 1905-1980,
 Papers of Nancy Hays Teeters, c. 1960-1984, 8 ft. 5
 Papers of Mary Frances Tenney, 1865-1930s, 2 in.
 Papers of Various Persons, 2 ft. 11 in., 1839-1979
 Papers of Mr. and Mrs. George L. (Alice Moon) Williams,
1883-1960, 3 ft.
 Papers of Henry E. Woodcock, 1838 (1848-l907)-1987,
1 ft. 3 in.
 Papers of Albert Allen Wright, 1858-1905, 2 ft. 8 in.
 Papers of George Frederick Wright, 1812-1921, 21 ft.
 Papers of Mary Sareta Yocom, 1930s-1960s, 2 in.
RECORDS OF THE OBERLIN COMMUNITY (Group
 Records of the American
Association of University Women (AAUW), 1914-1982, 1 ft. 3 in.
 Records of the Finitimi Society, 1902-1924, 2 ft. 5
 Records of the First and Second Congregational Churches,
1836-1988, 32 ft.
 Records of the Junior Forum, 1936-1940, ¼ in.
 Records of the League of Women Voters of Oberlin, 1924-1974,
 Records of the Literary and Social Club, 1933-1983,
2 ½ in.
 Records of the Maternal Association of Oberlin, 1835-1866,
1 ½ in.
 Records of the Mutual Improvement Club, 1913-14, ¼
 Records of the Newcomers Club, 1962-1975, 2 in.
 Records of the Nineteenth Century Club, 1924-1961, 1
 Records of the Non-Partisan Woman's Christian Temperance
Union, Oberlin, Ohio, 1897-1924, 2 ½ in.
 Records of the Oberlin Board of Education, 1860-1973,
3 ft. 6 in.
 Records of the Oberlin Female Moral Reform Society,
1835-1857, ½ in.
 Records of the Oberlin Historical and Improvement Organization,
1959 (1964-87) -1990, 5 ft. 5 in.
 Records of the Oberlin Industrial School, 1885-1914,
 Records of the Oberlin Junior League, 1935-36, Single
 Records of the Oberlin Junior Women's Club, 1954-1963,
 Records of the Oberlin Mutual Benefit Association, 1893-1921,
2 ½ in.
 Records of Oberlin Sorosis, 1898-1915, ¼ in.
 Records of the Oberlin Temperance League/Alliance and
Ladies League, 1870-1917, 3 in.
 Records of the Oberlin Woman's Club, 1901-1981,
2 ft. 2 ½ in.
 Records of the Order of the Eastern Star, 1918-1977,
 Records of the Senior Forum, 1941-1986, 1 ½ in.
 Records of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union,
1882-1976, 1 ft. 3 in.
 Records of the Woman's Foreign Missionary Society
of the First and Second Congregational Churches of Oberlin, 1869-1920,
 Records of the Woman's Relief Corps, 1885-1944,
1 ft. 3 in.
 Records of the Women's Progressive Club, 1912,
RECORDS OF THE COMMITTEES (Group
 Records of the Committee
on the Status of Women, 1971 (1972-1979) -1985, 1 ft.
 Records of Various Committees, 1912-1985, 18 ft. 9 in.
RECORDS OF THE SCHAUFFLER COLLEGE OF RELIGIOUS
AND SOCIAL WORK (Group 34)
 Records of the Schauffler
College of Religious and Social Work,
MOTION PICTURES AND TAPE RECORDINGS (Group
 Cassette Tapes, 1981, 13
½ hours of tape, 5 in.
RECORDS OF MISSIONARIES (Group
 Records of Missionaries,
1890-1949, 1 ft. 7 in.
In March 1834, Oberlin founder John Jay Shipherd committed the
fledgling institution to work on behalf of the "elevation of
female character, bringing within the reach of the misjudged and
neglected sex, all the instructive privileges which hitherto have
unreasonably distinguished the leading sex from theirs." The
Guide to Women's History Sources in the Oberlin College
Archives is a fitting continuation of Shipherd's mission.
Its publication makes more accessible over 140 collections of significant
historical documents from both the college and the community where
pioneers undertook efforts on behalf of coeducation and new gender
roles over 150 years ago.
Oberlin's achievements in women's history have received
widespread recognition. The first American institution to open its
doors to women students and one of the first to admit blacks, Oberlin
has maintained its preeminent role as an educator of women from
its founding to the present. The collections described in this guide
illuminate the environment that produced so many women graduates
of distinction, including Lucy Stone, abolitionist and feminist
orator; Antoinette Brown Blackwell, the first woman ordained in
the regular Protestant ministry; Mary Jane Patterson, the first
black woman to receive the bachelor's degree in the United
States; Mary Church Terrell, black suffragist, club woman, and educator;
and Doris Stevens, militant suffragist. Yet less well-known are
Oberlin's contributions to the social history of American women.
This historyencompassing women students, faculty and staff
members, and townspeoplehas profound implications. Materials
on student regulations and culture, perceptions and aspirations,
curriculum and faculty, diversity and decorum, offer the opportunity
to document the particular circumstances at the institution that
introduced sweeping innovations, with important reverberations for
women in American society. Oberlin's records not only permit
the careful evaluation of our individual case, but also present
possibilities for understanding larger questions. Most broadly,
19th-century social historians will delight in the wealth of materials
about the lives of women in Oberlin College, the Oberlin Academy,
and in the town. More specifically, researchers on voluntary associations
will find untapped resources on women's clubs and associations
both on and off campus. Students of the place of women in the academy
will be fascinated both by the rich material on women in the faculty
and administration and by the interchange between town and gown
documented in personal and organizational records. Historians of
women and religion will discover rich documentation of the role
of women in missionary work, including those who served and those
who, as wives, supported men who carried Oberlin's sense of
mission overseas. Scholars of sexual mores will find in the records
relating to student life voluminous materials detailing shifts in
social norms and the social relations of the sexes. And those with
more contemporary interests, including the development of the field
of women's studies, will discover a vast range of materials
permitting new types of inquiry.
This guide, then, provides information on an extensive range of
materials that will assist the documentation of the history not
only of Oberlin, but also of the larger issues for scholars in education,
social history, and women's studies. Oberlin has always sought to
influence, for the good, the larger community; it is my hope that
this publication will continue an aspect of Oberlin's laudable tradition.
Associate Professor of History, Oberlin College
The purpose of this subject guide is to assist researchers in
locating records (institutional and noninstitutional) within the
Oberlin College Archives that relate to women's history from the
1830s to the present. For the most part, this guide is based on
an examination of box listings developed between 1966 and 1989,
as well as on a review of the more than 400 groups of records themselves.
Although some isolated files or documents concerning women can be
found in other sources, they have not been included in this guide
because there is no practical way of identifying them. Thus, this
guide is not a comprehensive listing of every document relating
to women's history in the holdings of the Oberlin College Archives.
For example, the archives maintains the nonrestricted files of Alumni
and Development records of deceased women graduates and former students.
This group, which covers over 120,000 women students, is not reported
here. Nor does this guide report on the restricted student files
received from the Office of Residential Life. Finally, the guide
does not incorporate the holdings of the Department of Special Collections,
administered by the Oberlin College Library, which houses Oberlinian
and printed works of a rare and valuable nature.
The Oberlin College Archives contains the permanently valuable
records of the institution as well as those of individuals, families,
and organizations affiliated with Oberlin College and or the town
of Oberlin. The records are housed in the Oberlin College Library,
Mudd Center, Room 420, on the Oberlin College campus.
Under a classification scheme devised in the late 1960s, all college
records are assigned to numbered groups. A group most frequently
consists of the records of a single College office or department,
such as the Office of the Provost (#4), the Public Relations Department
(#18) or the Women's Department (#42). Records are sometimes
brought together on the basis of similar type, medium, or other
relationship. Examples of collective groups are Student Life (#19),
Committees (#33), and Motion Pictures and Tape Recordings (#37).
The current archival holdings consist of approximately 3,400 linear
feet of records organized around 53 record groups. The table of
contents is not only a listing of the contents of this subject guide,
but also a hierarchical view of the record groups.
The Oberlin College Archives attempts to maintain institutional
records in the order in which they were organized by the creating
college department or unit. It is believed that this strategy best
preserves their integrity and interrelationships. Researchers must
realize that college filing systems were designed for administrative
purposes and not for the benefit of future users. A major reason
for the preparation of this guide is to assist subject-oriented
researchers in clarifying complex relationships among collections
or groups of papers and in identifying material of interest among
vast quantities of records.
Each numbered entry in this guide includes a collection title
in boldface type, with inclusive dates and quantity figures in linear
feet or inches. Following the title is an Administrative History
or Biographical Note depending upon whether the entry reports on
a departmental unit in the institution or on the personal papers
of an individual or family. In cases where a detailed administrative
history sketch is lacking, a Historical Note is provided. Finally,
each entry has a notation concerning Scope and Content, which summarizes
the extent and depth of the group or collection. Directly or indirectly,
these notes report on the strengths and weaknesses of a collection,
and they provide a skeletal outline of the series descriptions,
when available, and folder listings.
Although this guide is arranged in order of record group numbers,
the names and subjects in the index are keyed to the bracketed entry
number appearing before each entry title, not to pages or to the
classification number assigned to the group. For example, in the
index, the number 23 associated with the Young Women's Missionary
Society refers to the entry and not to the page number.
Many staff members of the Oberlin College Archives have helped
with this publication. The descriptive work prepared between 1966
and 1986 by William E. Bigglestone, the first archivist, provided
an important starting point in the compilation of the subject guide.
Special reference is made here to his unpublished "Guide to
the Oberlin College Archives," which covers between three percent
and five percent of the noninstitutional holdings, plus a number
of preliminary inventories. Acknowledgment is also due to former
staff members Anne Pearson, who checked various loose ends for the
project, and Lisa Pruitt, who rearranged a number of institutional
record groups around records series, thus making these records easier
to describe for this guide; to Patricia K. Delewski for typing the
final manuscript; to Carol Lasser, associate professor of history
and chairwoman of the Women's Studies Program, for her interest
and cooperation; to Sam C. Carrier, provost, for having provided
College resources for a reinvigorated College Archives; to Dana
interns Pamela Kirwin (now Adams) and Alexandra (Alex) Weil, both
of whom worked with me to prepare the individual entries that comprise
this guide; and to the Dana Foundation for supporting the work of
the interns. We also gratefully acknowledge the support of Marlene
Deahl Merrill for her encouragement throughout the project as well
as her helpful comments in improving the manuscript. Anne C. Paine,
publications editor at Oberlin College, and D. Mark Gabel, graphic
designer at Oberlin College, provided invaluable assistance in preparing
the manuscript and mechanicals for the printer. Finally, special
thanks to the friends of Gertrude F. Jacob, who contributed to an
archival publications fund bearing her name; this fund has underwritten
the publication of this subject guide. It is fitting that we dedicate
this guide to the memory of Gertrude F. Jacob (1908-1989), who devoted
the last 23 years of her life to the work of the Oberlin College
Roland M. Baumann,
Oberlin College Archivist and Adjunct Professor of History
December 1, 1989