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Iowa Women’s Archives

The Iowa Women’s Archives holds more than 1200 manuscript collections that chronicle the lives and work of Iowa women, their families, and their communities. These personal papers and organizational records date from the nineteenth century to the present. Together with oral histories, they document the activities of Iowa women throughout the state and beyond its borders. The Iowa Women’s Archives is open to the public.

News from the Archives

  • Ella Wagner: 2019 Linda and Richard Kerber Travel Grant Recipient

    Ella Wagner, a PhD candidate from Loyola University is this year’s Linda and Richard Kerber travel grant recipient. Linda Kerber and her husband Richard founded this Fund for Research in the Iowa Women’s Archives that awards $1000 annually to a researcher, especially a graduate student, […]

  • Encountering Soul in the Iowa Women’s Archives: Scholar Taryn D. Jordan and the Aldeen Davis Papers

    Taryn D. Jordan was researching Ella Fitzgerald at the Schlesinger Library in the Radcliffe Institute when she first encountered the papers that would bring her to the Iowa Women’s Archives. Jordan is a doctoral candidate in Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies at Emory University […]

  • Feminist Activism on Display in IWA

    Over the next year, we’ll be celebrating the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in the United States. Already, we’re marking important dates.  100 years ago on June 4th, Congress passed the 19th amendment, and July 2nd was the 100th anniversary of Iowa’s becoming the […]

  • Playing, Pretending, Becoming: Iowa Girls and Their Dolls

    Shirley Briggs had a lot of toys. As a very little girl in the early 1920s, Shirley had dozens of pictures taken of her ensconced in an oversized chair with children’s book, playing in a wheel barrow, sitting in the sun, all with a coterie of stuffed animals and dolls. The most frequent […]

  • History Reflected Back: Part II

    Below is a reflection from Micaela Terronez, Olson Graduate Assistant, on a recent talk about her interest in the Mexican barrios of the Quad Cities at a local community gathering in Davenport, Iowa. She will be giving a version of this talk at “Workers’ Dream for an […]

  • History Reflected Back: Part I

    Below is a reflection from Micaela Terronez, Olson Graduate Assistant, on a recent talk about her interest in the Mexican barrios of the Quad Cities at a local community gathering in Davenport, Iowa. She will be giving a version of this talk at “Workers’ Dream for an […]

  • Activists in the Archives: Connecting High School Students with Local LGBTQ History

    Guest post by Dr. Heather Cooper, Visiting Assistant Professor in History and Gender, Women’s, and Sexuality Studies During LGBTQ History Month in October 2018, I worked with the Iowa Women’s Archives and University Special Collections to organize an archives visit for students from […]