Held at: Historical Society of Pennsylvania [Contact Us]1300 Locust Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19107
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
The League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania was established in 1920 as a successor organization to the Pennsylvania Woman Suffrage Association, with the purpose of providing "education to increase the effectiveness of women voters and to further better government."
At the time of its creation, the League of Women Voters was intended to be a temporary organization with the goal of "teaching all the new enfranchised women about the mechanics of registering and voting, nomination and election procedures … [and developing] certain 'needed legislation,'" (LWVP). Since then, the League has "evolved from an organization concerned with women's needs and with training women voters to one concerned with the nation's needs and with training all citizens" (LWVP).
In biennial conventions, the Pennsylvania League establishes its "Program," the issues selected for study, decision and action. State programs have been concerned with constitutional reform, legislative apportionment, election laws, education, welfare, the environment, and city and town planning.
The League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania has been active in the Education Fund, a non-profit trust established in 1970 for educating the public on government; Time for Action, a program to involve local leagues in state legislative issues; Pennsylvanian Assess Coal Today, a study on potential uses and environmental impact of coal on the state; local government and community projects; environmental projects; and other state and national issues.
"About the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania (LWVPA)," League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania website, http://www.palwv.org/About-Us/About-LWVPA.asp
The League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania records document the history of this organization from 1867 to 1980, but the bulk of the material dates from 1959 to 1977. There is a small amount of earlier material, particularly relating to the suffrage movement. Of particular interest may be the photographs of the 1915 Women's Liberty Bell Tour in support of the vote.
Researchers will find state board and agenda minutes, 1920 to 1973; state and local annual reports, 1957 to 1973; miscellaneous organizational material and correspondence, 1957 to 1973; treasurer's reports and other financial records, 1933 to 1977; local league reports, 1923 to 1977; mailings, 1959 to 1974; state league convention minutes and reports, 1939 to 1977; political material, 1920 to 1976, particularly regarding to the reform of the state constitution; educational materials; local government and community projects, 1957 to 1978; environmental projects, 1958 to 1978; national issues, 1946 to 1971; state issues, 1934 to 1976; and scrapbooks, 1951 to 1969.
In using the records, a researcher should be aware that information on a particular subject may be found in several different locations.
This collection is arranged to the box level.
Gift of the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania, 1980 and 1990.
The first edition of this electronic guide was made possible through generous funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, administered through the Council on Library and Information Resources' "Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives" Project. Finding aid entered into the Archivists' Toolkit by Garrett Boos.
The second edition of this was created when the collection was rehoused in 2016.
- Historical Society of Pennsylvania
- Finding Aid Date
- Access Restrictions
This collection is open for research use.
- Use Restrictions
Copyright restrictions may apply. Please contact the Historical Society of Pennsylvania with requests for copying and for authorization to publish, quote or reproduce the material.