Records of Concord Massachusetts Woman's Club 1895-<ongoing>

Concord Mass. Woman's Club logo

Vault A75 Con. Mas., Unit 1

8 linear feet (38 bound volumes and 11 containers)

ORGANIZATION AND ARRANGEMENT: Organized into thirteen series: I. Constitution and by-laws, 1953-<1987> and undated; II. General meeting minutes and annual reports, 1895-<1993>; III. Executive Board meeting minutes, 1900-<1993>; IV. Committee reports, 1977; V. Programs and projects, (1923-<1981> and undated; VI. Financial records, 1896-1911 and 1937-<1993>; VII. Membership information, 1898-<1987>; VIII. Yearbooks, 1899-<1998> ; IX. Correspondence, 1968-<1979>; X. Newsletters, 1980-<1999>; XI. Scrapbooks, photographs and newspaper clippings, 1930s -<1980s>; XII. Portraits of Club Presidents, 1895-<1981>; XIII. Ephemera and artifacts, 1953-1982 and undated; XIV. Histories of the Woman's Club, 1955-<1991>.>/p>

HISTORY: The Concord Massachusetts Woman's Club was formed in 1895 at the instigation of Mrs. Edward C. Damon, who had been influenced by the formation of such a club in the nearby town of Wellesley. The Club was founded during an era when woman's clubs were becoming important outlets for woman's energies and talents throughout the United States (see, for example, Anne Firor Scott, Natural Allies: Women's Associations in American History, Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1991 and Theodora Penny Martin, The Sound of Our Own Voices: Women's Study Clubs 1860-1910, Boston: Beacon Press, 1987 ). The objects of the Club were "educational, philanthropic, and social advancement," and the Club slogan, reflecting its emphasis on identifying worthy programs, was (until 1989) "Leave the chaff and take the wheat." The Concord Club became affiliated with the Massachusetts State Federation of Women's Clubs in 1896 and with the national General Federation of Women's Clubs in 1920.

The Club, which met semi-monthly from its inception to the 1950s and monthly thereafter, was largely composed of Concord women, although members from neighboring towns were accepted. Until the 1970s, the Club generally had between 300 and 400 members; thereafter, membership ranged from 100 to 200. Throughout its history, Club activities have included a mix of philanthropy (notably its fundraising for the purchase and renovation of the Alcott House from 1910-1912, its long-term support for a school for youth in Kentucky, and its scholarship program for college bound Concord students ), educational lectures on art, science, history, domestic matters and civic issues (including a visit from Booker T. Washington in 1904 and U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development George Romney in 1973), drama, music and art programs (with frequent productions of plays starring Club members), and purely social gatherings.

The Club did not appear to have a strong political or reform agenda, although in its early years it sponsored one resolution opposing the exclusion of "colored women" from membership in the General Federation of Women's Clubs (1902) and another opposing the death penalty. The two world wars had a strong impact on Club activity, with the focus during these years on programs to help the soldiers abroad and those hospitalized near Concord.

When the Club was founded in 1895, educational and occupational opportunities for women were limited, and the Club clearly benefited from the energies of women looking for outlets for satisfaction outside the home. Yet despite the growing availability of avenues for achievement for women throughout the past century, the Club – as memorialized in its remarkably complete set of minutes, yearbooks and other records – persisted, and remains in existence today.

SCOPE AND CONTENT: Series I, Constitution and by-laws , 1953-<1987>, plus undated includes an undated, early copy of the Club's Constitution and By-laws, a 1953 version, proposed 1968 changes, 1987 By-laws, and undated By-laws amendments. Series II, General meeting minutes and annual reports, 1895-<1993> includes, for the period 1895-1975, complete (except as noted) handwritten minutes of all regular meetings for each year and the year's annual meeting, as well as an annual report by the Secretary at the end of the Club year, which generally ran from October to April. For 1895-1975, minutes and annual reports are in bound volumes. For the period after 1975, the series includes only unbound annual reports for 1975-1976, 1976-1977, and 1977-1978 and typed general meeting minutes for the Club years 1991-1992 and 1992-1993. Series III, Executive Board meeting minutes, 1899-<1992> includes, for the period 1899-1975, bound, handwritten records of the periodic meetings of the officers of the Club at which executive action was taken. For the 1991-1992 and 1992-1993 Club years it includes typed Executive Board meeting minutes. Series IV, Officer and committee information and committee reports, 1977-<1999> includes annual reports of the Club committees for the Club year 1976-1977 and 1999 officer job descriptions. Series V, Programs and projects, 1923-<1981> and undated includes records on major Club initiatives, such as the Bicentennial quilt project in 1975 and the college scholarship fund, as well as information on Club drama programs. Series VI, Financial records, 1896-1911 and 1937-<1993> and undated includes bound Treasurer's ledger books for the periods 1896-1911 and 1937-1973 containing the Treasurer's recording of receipts and outlays and annual listings of Club members. The volume covering the years 1912-1936 is missing. The series also contains other miscellaneous financial reports and tax filings. Series VII, Membership information, 1898-<1987> includes the membership list for 1898-1899, correspondence regarding Club resignations in 1915, and a 1987 recognition of fifty year members. Annual membership lists are included in Series VIII, Yearbooks. Series VIII, Yearbooks, 1899-<1998> consists of programs printed in advance of each Club year listing Club members and officers, the proposed program for each meeting of the year, and other information varying from year to year, including by-laws and significant committee activity. Yearbooks are lacking for the following Club years: 1949-50, 1973-1974, 1983-84, 1984-85, 1985-86, and 1993-1994. Series IX. Correspondence, 1968-<1979> contains miscellaneous Club correspondence. Series X. Newsletters, 1980-<1999> includes periodic updates on Club activities for members. Series XI. Scrapbooks, photographs and newspaper clippings, 1930s-1980s, comprises seven scrapbooks from the 1960s to the 1980s containing press clippings and other material informally compiled and often undated, and loose newspaper clippings from the 1930s to the 1970s. Series XII, Portraits of Club Presidents, 1895-<1981> includes prints and negatives, and includes both individual portraits of every Club President from 1895 to 1981, as well as group portraits taken in 1935, 1945 (2 poses), summer 1946 and winter 1946, and 1958 of the current President with past Club Presidents. Series XIII, Ephemera and artifacts, 1951-1982 and undated includes items such as the gavel used by past Club Presidents, a bound guestbook used by the Club at meetings from 1953 to 1980, and a fifty-year membership pin awarded to a member in 1977. Series XIV, Histories of the Woman's Club, 1955-<1991>, include seven papers or talks prepared by Club members in 1955, 1965,1970, 1975,1979, 1981 and 1991. Some are revisions of previous histories rather than entirely new material. It also includes a report of Ruth Hill, the retiring historian, prepared in 1977.

SOURCE OF ACQUISITION: Deposited by the Concord Massachusetts Woman's Club, December 1975; updated periodically; converted to gift, 8/3/01.

NOTES/COMMENTS: Accessioned 3/09/99; AMC # 029.

PROCESSED BY: SJB under the supervision of LPW; finding aid prepared 12/15/01.


CONSTITUTION AND BY-LAWS , 1953-<1987>, and undated.

Box 1, Folder 1.
Constitution and by-laws, 1953-<1987>, and undated.


Except at noted, each volume contains complete minutes of regular meetings, minutes of the annual meeting, and annual reports for the years stated, and, also except noted, volumes run from the fall of the first year to the spring of the last.
Volumes II. 1. – II. 14, unboxed

Volume II. 1.

Annual reports for 1896, 1897, 1899 lacking.

Volume II. 2.

Annual report for 1903 lacking.

Volume II. 3.

Annual reports for 1911, 1912, 1917 lacking.

Volume II. 4.

Volume II. 5.

Volume II. 6.

Volume II. 7.

Volume II. 8.
1937- January 1941.

Volume II. 9.
February 1941-1944

Volume II. 10.

Volume II. 11.

Volume II. 12.

Volume II. 13.

Volume II. 14.

Box 1, Folder 2.
Unbound annual reports for 1976, 1978, 1979

Box, 1, Folder 3.
Agenda for annual meeting, 1977

Box 1, Folder 4.
Unbound general meeting minutes 1991-1992

Box 1, Folder 5.
Unbound general meeting minutes 1992-1993

Box 1, Folder 6.
Minutes of October 4, [1993?] general meeting.


Volumes III. 1.– III. 11., unboxed

Volume III. 1.
1899 –1906 (April) (spine label 1900-1906)

Volume III. 2.
1906 (May) – 1909 (April)

Volume III. 3.
1909 (May) – 1921 (April)

Volume III. 4.
1921 (May) – 1927 (November)

Volume III. 5.
1927 (December) – 1936 (June)

Volume III. 6.
1936 (October) – 1942 (April)

Volume III. 7.
1942 (May) – 1948 (November)

Volume III. 8.
1948 (December) – 1957 (May)

Volume III. 9.
1957 (June) – 1965 (November)

Volume III. 10.
1965 (December) – 1973 (September)

Volume III. 11.
1973 (October) – 1977 (October)

Box 1, Folder 7.
Unbound Executive Board meeting minutes 1991-1992

Box 1, Folder 8.
Unbound Executive Board meeting minutes 1992-1993


Box 1, Folder 9.
Committee reports, 1977. Includes brief reports from the following committees: American Home, Psi Study Group, Holiday Group, Stitch n Knit, Book Review Group, Antiques Group, Publicity, Friendly Services, Doorkeeper and Hospitality, Ways and Means, and Social.

Box 1, Folder 10.
Officer and committee job descriptions, 1999

PROGRAMS AND PROJECTS, 1923-<1981>, and undated

Box 1, Folder 11.
Play programs, 1923-1950; 3 undated.

Box 1, Folder 12.
Program questionnaire, 1934

Box 1, Folder 13.
State Federation conference, 1935

Box 1, Folder 14.
"The Grandmothers," Club production in 1940 and 1970

Box 1, Folder 15.
Authors and Artists Night, 1945

Box 1, Folder 16.
Open House Day, 1951

Box 1, Folder 17.
Scholarship fund, 1967-1981

Box 1, Folder 18.
Bridge Marathon, 1968-1969

Box 1, Folder 19.
Rape awareness program, 1975-1980

Box 1, Folder 20.
Bicentennial quilt project, 1975

Box 1, Folder 21.
Bicentennial quilt project, 1975, Town of Concord Annual Report

Box 1, Folder 22.
Tour of Concord Gardens, 1976

Box 1, Folder 23.
Tour of Concord Historic Homes, 1977

Box 1, Folder 24.
Needlecraft kit of Club seal, undated

Box 1, Folder 25.
Crime prevention program, undated

FINANCIAL RECORDS, 1896-1911 AND 1937-<1993> and undated

Volumes VI. 1 – VI. 3, unboxed

Volume VI. 1.
Treasurer's book, 1896-1911

Volume VI. 2.
Treasurer's book, 1937-1957

Volume VI. 3.
Treasurer's book, 1957-1973

Box 2, Folder 1.
1971 Federal income tax return

Box 2, Folder 2.
1993 financial statement

Box 2, Folder 3.
Fundraising suggestions, undated


Box 2, Folder 4.
1898-1899 membership list

Box 2, Folder 5.
1915 membership resignations

Box 2, Folder 6.
1935 membership solicitation

Box 2, Folder 7.
1970s membership committee reports

Box 2, Folder 8.
1987 recognition of long-term members

YEARBOOKS, 1899-<1998>

Volumes VIII. 1. – VIII. 10., unboxed

Volume VIII. 1.

Volume VIII. 2.

Volume VIII. 3.

Volume VIII. 4.

Volume VIII. 5.

Volume VIII. 6.

Volume VIII. 7.
1945-1949 (no yearbook for Club year 1949-1950)

Volume VIII. 8.

Volume VIII. 9.

Volume VIII. 10.
1971-1980 (no yearbook for Club year 1973-1974)

Box 2, Folder 9.
1905-1907 (duplicates)

Box 2, Folder 10.
1980 –1989 (no yearbooks for Club years 1983-1984, 1984-1985, and 1985-1986)

Box 2, Folder 11.

Box 2, Folder 12.
1992-1998 (no yearbook for 1993-1994)


Box 3, Folder 1.
Correspondence, 1968-<1979>

NEWSLETTERS, 1980-<1999>

Box 3, Folder 2.
February (?) 1980 and May 1985 – June 1988

Box 3, Folder 3.
October 1988-December 1993

Box 3, Folder 4.
October 1994-March 1999


Box 4A
Scrapbook 1960s
Scrapbook 1975-1976

Box 4B
Scrapbook 1974-1975
Scrapbook 1960s (art programs)

Box 4C
Scrapbook 1983-1993
Scrapbook 1977-1982
Scrapbook 1976-1977

Box 5, Folder 1.
Photograph of officers and guests, February 12, 1962 meeting

Box 5, Folder 2. 2
Photograph of 80th Club anniversary, 1975

Box 5, Folder 3.
Newspaper clippings, 1930s

Box 5, Folder 4.
Newspaper clippings, 1960s

Box 5, Folder 5.
Newspaper clippings, 1970s


Box 6, Folder 1.
Individual portraits, 1895-1933

Box 6, Folder 2.
Individual portraits, 1933-1953

Box 6, Folder 3.
Individual portraits, 1953-1968

Box 6, Folder 4.
Individual portraits, 1968-1981

Box 6, Folder 5.
Group portraits, 1935-1958

Box 6, Folder 6.
Duplicates of portraits, 1895-1945, bound

Box 6, Folder 7.
Negatives of individual and group portraits

EPHEMERA AND ARTIFACTS, 1953-1982 and undated

Box 7A.
Gavel donated by Mary Fenn, 1982.

Box 7B.
Fifty-year member pin awarded 1977.

Box 7C.
Guest book, 1953-1980.

Oversize Folder.
Poster for guided tour of Concord Historic Homes, 1977.

Box 6, Folder 8.
Club citations, 1962-1975

Box 6, Folder 9.
Alcott House and family montage photograph, undated


Box 6, Folder 10.
"Looking Backward 1895-1955" by Mrs. Herbert Buttrick Hosmer (2 c.)

Box 6, Folder 11.
"History of Concord, Massachusetts Woman's Club" given to the Club on October 11, 1965 by Mrs. George A. Hill

Box 6, Folder 12.
"Concord Massachusetts Woman's Club History, 1965-1970" given to the Club on December 14, 1970 by Mrs. George A. Hill, historian.

Box 6, Folder 13.
"History of the Concord, Massachusetts Woman's Club" read at the Club on October 11, 1965 by Mrs. George A. Hill, historian, updated for 1970-1975 (2 c.) including addendum, interesting notes by Past President Mrs. Hans Miller

Box 6, Folder 14.
"5 Minute Talk on the History of the Woman's Club" by Mary R. Fenn, February 12, 1979.

Box 6, Folder 15.
"History of the Concord Massachusetts Woman's Club 1975-1981" by Rosalie Coletta Okurowski.

Box 6, Folder 16.
"Then and Now" a talk given by Julia Cole at the Concord Massachusetts Woman's Club Annual Luncheon in May, 1991.

Box 6, Folder 17.
Report of Ruth Hill, retiring historian, 1977.

Finding Aid c2001 Concord Free Public Library.

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