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Betty Lee Hutchinson papers


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. 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

Betty Lee Hutchinson, a Democrat and Newark City Council member (1977-1980 and 1984-1988) was born November 18, 1925, in Uniontown, PA, to Harry J. Truman, Sr. (1897-1965), and Merle Carte Truman (1901-2001). Her parents were originally from central West Virginia. Her father completed only 8th grade. She has one sister, Frances Coe (b. 1935), and one brother, the late Harry J. Truman, Jr. (1930-1968). She was married to Harry D. Hutchinson (1924-2005), a World War II veteran and professor of economics from the University of Delaware. Betty Lee was educated at Union High School in Uniontown. She attended Bethany College in Bethany, West Virginia, until 1947, but ultimately graduated from the University of Pittsburgh, 1948. She studied social work, and from 1944-1949 worked in that field. She and Harry married on December 25, 1949. In 1950, her first child, David, was born and she became a stay-at-home-mother. The Hutchinson's had two more children after David, Anne and Douglas. Harry and Betty Lee lived in Ann Arbor, Michigan, while Harry completed his PhD in economics; they also lived in Toledo, OH, before moving to Newark, DE, in 1959. Betty Lee was active in the Newark community as a volunteer and as an elected official. In 1974, three years prior to her first election to the city council, Betty Lee was appointed as a Commissioner of the Newark Housing Authority. When Betty Lee served on the Newark City Council, she focused on issues of city beautification and community organization. She is a lifetime honorary member of the League of Women Voters of Greater Newark, Delaware, an organization she was president of from 1967-1969. She remained interested in Newark events, volunteering at the Newark Free Library after she retired from the City Council, and served as a member of the Hidden Valley Trail Committee in 1992. Betty Lee and Harry enjoyed travel and visited places throughout the United States and in Western Europe and Barbados. Some of these trips were in conjunction with Elderhostel tours, educational travel opportunities for adults. She retired to the village of Oak Park, Illinois, to the west of Chicago, in 2013. Hutchinson died in Michigan on September 26, 2020. Biographical information related to Betty Lee Hutchinson derived from the papers in her collection. "Betty Lee (Truman) Hutchinson," obituary, accessed December 14, 2020, .

The Betty Lee Hutchinson papers document the personal interests and civic activities of a woman with ties to Newark, Delaware, and the University of Delaware community. The collection consists of family photographs and correspondence, greeting cards and postcards, travel journals and Elderhostel materials, political and personal ephemera, maps, certificates of honor, and records of Betty Lee's civic engagement with Newark, Delaware, as a City Council representative of the third district.

The collection is arranged in six series: I. Family and personal, II. Civic engagement, III. Travel, IV. Correspondence, V. Delawareana, and VI. Maps.

Notable records from the first series include family photographs and materials from Betty Lee's parents' families, the Cartes and the Trumans. Printed materials document her father's World War I military enlistment while photographs show fashion and apparel from the era. These items also document the middle-class lifestyle of two central West Virginia families in the early twentieth century. Betty Lee's public school records, and some of her college materials, are in the first series along with her husband Harry's early materials. Some of Harry's materials also include his correspondence with members of the University of Delaware faculty and administration, his curriculum vitae, his teaching honors from the university, and ephemera from university related events. Materials from Betty Lee and Harry's children, David Hutchinson, Anne Clites Hutchinson, and Douglas Hutchinson, and grandchildren are also present in this series.

The second series documents Betty Lee's involvement with the Newark City Council, including her city beautification efforts. The second series also contains materials related to her involvement with the Newark Free Library, the BBZ investment club, the Hidden Trail Committee, and the League of Women Voters of Greater Newark, Delaware.

Series II also includes a large collection of political ephemera, most notably a series of campaign posters, yard signs and bumper stickers from local, state and national candidates for elected office, including Presidents Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter; Senators Tom Carper and Chris Coons; Governors Russ Petersen and Jack Markell, as well as posters for the League of Women Voters and six campaign buttons.

The third series documents the travel of Betty Lee's family. The postcards and the travel journals not only document the trips, but also contain materials related to the Elderhostel program. Records of trips to England, France, Italy, Greece, and Barbados are also in this series. Trips to California and the American West are also located in this series.

The bulk of the collection is in correspondence, found in the fourth series. The greeting cards and letters exchanged between Betty Lee and her children, sister, mother, and friends document close relationships in the mid-to-late-twentieth century and early twenty-first century. Some correspondence is also located in the second series of the collection because of its political subjects. Letters from Senators Joseph R. Biden, Jr., and Thomas R. Carper include handwritten greetings to Betty Lee in response to her civic engagement in Newark, as well as her personal acquaintance with the politicians. She also exchanged correspondence with Shelley R. Moore, mother of West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito and wife of former West Virginia Governor Arch A. Moore.

The fifth series contains Delawareana and materials pertaining to nature and the environment in the state. This includes nature guide books, pamphlets about Wilmington, tourism materials Newark history and recreational opportunities, and local efforts to establish recycling programs and water-use awareness programs.

The sixth and final series contains oversized maps including Western Europe, South America, East Asia, constellations, the American Colonies, and Newark city planning.

Items in this collection are arranged thematically.

Boxes 1-4: Shelved in SPEC MSS record center cartons

Box 5: Shelved in SPEC MSS manuscript boxes (1 inch)

Removals: Shelved in SPEC oversize mapcases

Gift of Betty Lee Hutchinson, April 2013.

Processed and encoded by Katherine Riley, January 2018.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2018 January 26
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

Truman family genealogy .
Box 1 Folder 1
Harry J. Truman family.
Box 1 Folder 2
Truman family photographs.
Box 1 Folder 3
Truman family photographs.
Box 1 Folder 4
Truman-Carte family photographs.
Box 1 Folder 5
Merle Carte Truman.
Box 1 Folder 6
Merle Carte Truman, 90th birthday, 1990.
Box 1 Folder 7
Hutchinson family dogs, Buff and Brandy.
Box 1 Folder 8
Hutchinson family photos.
Box 1 Folder 9
Hutchinson family photographs.
Box 1 Folder 10
Hutchinson family photographs.
Box 1 Folder 11
Betty Lee, childhood materials.
Box 1 Folder 12
Betty Lee, Uniontown High School, 60th anniversary.
Box 1 Folder 13
Betty Lee, marriage.
Box 1 Folder 14
Betty Lee, University of Delaware memberships.
Box 1 Folder 15
Betty Lee, philanthropy and involvement, University of Delaware.
Box 1 Folder 16
Betty Lee, BBZ investment club, 1991, 2001, 2003.
Box 1 Folder 17
Betty Lee, clubs, 1990s-2000s.
Box 1 Folder 18
Betty Lee, Newark Free Library, membership.
Box 1 Folder 19
Betty Lee, Newark Free Library, book notes.
Box 1 Folder 20
Betty Lee, calendars, 1963, 1984.
Box 1 Folder 21
Betty Lee, Uniontown High School Reunions, 1973, 1983, 1993, 1997, 2003.
Box 1 Folder 22
Betty Lee, Bethany College.
Box 1 Folder 23
Betty Lee, University of Pittsburgh, 1948.
Box 1 Folder 24
Harry D. Hutchinson family ephemera.
Box 1 Folder 25
Harry D. Hutchinson, education .
Box 1 Folder 26
Harry D. Hutchinson, UD (University of Delaware) teaching .
Box 1 Folder 27
Harry D. Hutchinson, University of Delaware.
Box 1 Folder 28
Harry D. Hutchinson, University of Delaware memos and correspondence.
Box 1 Folder 29
Harry D. Hutchinson, retirement and memorials.
Box 1 Folder 30
David Hutchinson, 1960, 1980.
Box 2 Folder 31
Anne Hutchinson Clites.
Box 2 Folder 32
Doug Hutchinson, 1984, 2002.
Box 2 Folder 33
Hutchinson children.
Box 2 Folder 34
Hutchinson grandchildren.
Box 2 Folder 35
Ephemera, Truman family.
Box 2 Folder 36
Ephemera, Truman family newspaper clippings.
Box 2 Folder 37
Ephemera, social events.
Box 2 Folder 38
Ephemera, obituaries .
Box 2 Folder 39
Ephemera, invitations.
Box 2 Folder 40
Ephemera, University of Delaware.
Box 2 Folder 41

Newark City Council honors, 1988.
Box 2 Folder 42
Newark City Council newspaper clippings.
Box 2 Folder 43
Newark City Council .
Box 2 Folder 44
Newark City Council Housing Authority .
Box 2 Folder 45
Newark City Council beautification projects.
Box 2 Folder 46
Volunteering in Newark.
Box 2 Folder 47
Newark Hidden Valley Trail Committee.
Box 2 Folder 48
League of Women Voters, 1 of 2.
Box 2 Folder 49
League of Women Voters, 2 of 2.
Box 2 Folder 50
Women's political issues.
Box 2 Folder 51
Political ephemera, editorials and responses.
Box 2 Folder 52
Political ephemera, national .
Box 2 Folder 53
Political ephemera, Delaware.
Box 2 Folder 54
Political ephemera, West Virginia .
Box 2 Folder 55
Political posters and yard signs.
Mapcase Oversized Folder 56

Elderhostel, 1 of 4 .
Box 2 Folder 57
Elderhostel, 2 of 4.
Box 2 Folder 58
Elderhostel, 3 of 4.
Box 2 Folder 59
Elderhostel, 4 of 4 .
Box 2 Folder 60
St. Petersburg, Florida.
Box 2 Folder 61
Maine, 1978.
Box 2 Folder 62
California visits.
Box 2 Folder 63
American West, 1980-1989.
Box 2 Folder 64
Miscellaneous U.S. Travel.
Box 2 Folder 65
Italy, 1995.
Box 3 Folder 66
France, 1999.
Box 3 Folder 67
England, 1985, 1987.
Box 3 Folder 68
Barbados, 1988.
Box 3 Folder 69
Greece, 1995.
Box 3 Folder 70
"Around Britain Triangle," Stan Ashington, 1984 (Gift to Betty Lee), 1984.
Box 3 Folder 71
Francis Truman Coe and Don Coe, travel journals, 1990-2000.
Box 3 Folder 72
Miscellaneous foreign travel.
Box 3 Folder 73

Correspondence, 1940s-1950s, (1940s-1950s).
Box 3 Folder 74
Correspondence, 1960s-1970s, (1960-1970s).
Box 3 Folder 75
Betty Lee, letters to family, 1958-2000s, (1958-2000s).
Box 3 Folder 76
Holiday correspondence, photographs.
Box 3 Folder 77
Correspondence, 1977-1983, (1977-1983).
Box 3 Folder 78
Correspondence, 1980s, (1980s).
Box 3 Folder 79
Correspondence, 1980s-2000s, (1980s-2000s).
Box 3 Folder 80
Correspondence, 1980s-2000s, (1980s-2000s).
Box 3 Folder 81
Correspondence, 1988-1992, 1988-1992.
Box 3 Folder 82
Correspondence, 1990s, 1990s.
Box 3 Folder 83
Correspondence, 1990s-2000s, 1990s-2000s.
Box 3 Folder 84
Correspondence, 2000s, 2000s.
Box 3 Folder 85
Correspondence, 2001-2009, 2001-2009.
Box 3 Folder 86
Correspondence, undated.
Box 3 Folder 87
Holiday correspondence, 1983-1986, 1983-1986.
Box 3 Folder 88
Holiday correspondence, 1980s-2000s, (1980s-2000s).
Box 3 Folder 89
Greeting Cards, 1 of 3.
Box 3 Folder 90
Greeting Cards, 2 of 3.
Box 3 Folder 91
Greeting Cards, 3 of 3.
Box 3 Folder 92
Postcards, undated, 1940-1980s, (1940s-1980s).
Box 3 Folder 93
Postcards, (1940s-1970s).
Box 3 Folder 94
Postcards, 1970-1980s.
Box 4 Folder 95
Postcards, 1980s-1990s.
Box 4 Folder 96
Postcards, 1990s-2000s, undated, (1990s-2000s).
Box 4 Folder 97

Box 4 Folder 98
Apple Road Community .
Box 4 Folder 99
U of D (University of Delaware) response to Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
Box 4 Folder 100
Delaware pamphlets, 1 of 2.
Box 4 Folder 101
Delaware pamphlets, 2 of 2.
Box 4 Folder 102
Delaware history, government, and tourism.
Box 4 Folder 103
Delaware nature.
Box 4 Folder 104
Delaware environment.
Box 4 Folder 105
WILMAPCO (Wilmington Area Planning Council).
Box 4 Folder 106
Delaware libraries.
Box 4 Folder 107
Delaware plants- Inserts from Delaware Trees book.
Box 4 Folder 108
The Delaware Citizen: The Guide to Active Citizenship in the First State, 1967.
Box 4
Physical Description

This book was given to Betty Lee Hutchinson after serving as President of the League of Women Voters of Newark, 1967-1969 by the Board of Directors. Members of the board signed the cover page.

Delaware's Outstanding Natural Areas and their Preservation, 1978.
Box 4
Delaware Trees: A Guide to the Identification of the Native Tree Species, 1960.
Box 4
VI.. Maps.
Mapcase Oversized Folder 109

Print, Suggest