Processed by Sharon Brown McConnell; machine-readable finding aid created by Hilary Writt
The Papers of EKU Women
Eastern Kentucky University ArchivesRichmond, Kentucky 40475-3102
Collection is open for research.
[Identification of item], The Papers of Eastern Kentucky University Women, 89A2, University Archives, Eastern Kentucky University, Richmond.
3.45 cubic feet, 9000 items, 4 Boxes
EKU Women was first organized in 1955 by Verda Hatch and Emma Jaggers as Faculty Wives. It was begun as a social organization for wives of faculty members and as a stepping-stone to meeting wives of new faculty members. This met with the approval of President W.F. O'Donnell, as long as the group did "not interfere in any way with the college." Meetings were at first confined to luncheons and bridge games; however, very soon husbands were included during dances and certain other social events. By the second year, meetings were changed to dinners in the Blue Room of the Keen Johnson Building with bridge and conversation following. Beginning in 1961, entertainment for the members included flower arranging and a style show. For several years members provided Christmas gifts for the Telford Community Center. In later years food fairs, craft fairs, brunches, and certain stage productions were included. Some off-campus tours were coffee at the governor's mansion with Governor and Mrs. Louie Nunn and a trip to the antique shops in Washington, Kentucky. Over the years, home tours of members or of historic homes in Richmond have been conducted. Special events for newcomers are scheduled annually. Progressive dinners and hayrides have been given. In 1973, a scholarship fund was established. Using proceeds from the spring style show and certain other monies, EKU Women now provides a modest stipend for deserving young women during the senior year.
When university status was achieved in 1966, the name of the organization was changed from Faculty Wives to EKU Women. At this time, it was decided to include in their membership women faculty members. From the first meeting in 1955, the number of members has grown from nineteen to over three hundred. The first constitution was written in 1965 and has been revised several times.
The organization continues to grow and prosper, assimilating new ideas and establishing new goals. It remains among the most prestigious women's group in Richmond, Kentucky.
The EKU Women Papers are comprised of scrapbooks and printed directories for many of the years from the organization's inception in 1955 until 1983. During many of these years, especially the early years, directories were not published and few papers were generated. The growth and scope of the organization is traced in these papers as new roles and responsibilities emerge.
These papers are divided into three series: the Historical Series, the Scrapbook Series, and the Publications Series. Detailed descriptions are give of each series. Organization of the collection included arranging material chronologically and photocopying many of the clippings. Duplicate items were discarded. A short history of the club written by Syble Miller was most helpful in the writing of the historical sketch. Each item was carefully evaluated and organized to the best advantage for use by future researchers. It is assumed that more material will be added to the collection in following years.
The Historical Series is comprised of one folder in which a seven and one-half page history of EKU Women written by Syble Miller in 1978 is filed. This history is also condensed, edited, and filed in the 1982-83 scrapbook.
The scrapbooks of EKU Women contain clippings, interviews, and articles about activities of the organization and photographs of the executive committee, members of event committees, members and guests. Many lists are included: officers, committees, wives of Regents, newcomers, special guests, interest groups, duties of committee members. Other items in the scrapbooks are copies of placecards, name tags, programs, questionnaires and their results, flyers written to members requesting attendance and participation, sketches of the Ballroom with scale arrangements of tables, copies of the constitution and revisions. Financial records such as inter-accounting of duplication records, charges from Food Services, and similar expenditures are noted. Correspondence with special guests, guest speakers, and members has been saved. Some presidents have saved verbatim remarks which they made during each event.
Directories comprise the bulk of this series which list the names of women eligble to participate in EKU Women, the names of their husbands, the department to which the EKU employee belongs, and the telephone number at which each woman can be reached. Some directories also give the home addresses of women. In the front of each directory the names of all the presidents who have served EKU Women are listed chronologically.
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