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Iowa Women's Archives


Over one hundred memoirs and reminiscences of Iowa women are preserved in the Iowa Women’s Archives.  The majority are unpublished or self-published works in formats ranging from books to binders, spiral notebooks, and looseleaf paper. They vary from just a few pages to several hundred pages in length and span the mid-nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The memoirs reflect a range of geographical locations within Iowa and beyond its borders, and their authors represent a variety of occupational, racial, and ethnic backgrounds.


Allen, Benita (1911-1983)

“Memoirs of Pre-Revolution Russia,” 1981, 130 pp.

A Russian immigrant recalls her Russian childhood, World War I, and the 1917 Bolshevik revolution.

Anderson, Ruth Bluford (1921- )

From Mother’s Aid to University Professor, 1985, 136pp.

The biography of an African American social worker and teacher from Oklahoma who moved to Sioux City, Iowa, with her family in 1928.

In the Ruth Bluford Anderson Papers.

Auer, Amy Sophia (1900- )

“Memoirs,” 1993, 141pp.

The daughter of Norwegian immigrants who settled in Kensett, Iowa, in the 1880s.

Autobiographical Sketches of Rural Farm Women

Brief reminiscences of twelve Iowa farm women.

View finding aid.


Block, Marjorie Jean (1920- )

“My Story,” 1993, 9 pp.

Block describes growing up as an identical twin in Spring Valley, Minnesota, and her married life on a farm near Iowa City.

“Nursing Experiences, 1942-1998,”  1998, 5pp.

View finding aid .

Blom, Nancy (1907- )

“My Story,” 1984, 129pp.

The autobiography of a Dutch immigrant details childhood in the Netherlands and farm town life in western Iowa in the early twentieth century. [Shelved in printed works collection, 99-372]

View finding aid.

Boyd, June Lundy (1922- )

“Memoirs of a Middle Child,” 2002, 67pp.

Descriptions of growing up in Nebraska and rural Iowa, the Sidney rodeo, teaching career, World War II, and marriage.

Boyle, Charla Ann”Toot”

“Toot’s Eye View,” undated, 32pp.

Boyle writes about her mother, Winifred Duffy, born in 1878 in Wilbern, Kansas, who, in 1921, moved to Fort Madison, Iowa, where she raised a family and ran a “confectionary” store.

Braverman, Rosalie Richman  (1910- )

“Youthful Journeys in Poland and Germany,” 1999, 79pp.

View finding aid.

Brindle, Effie Hadley (1876- )

“Memoirs: Effie ‘Hadley’ Brindle,” 1972, 64pp.

Family history and memories of farming with her husband, John Brindle in Hardin County, Iowa, at the turn of the century.  John Brindle, served in the Iowa House of Representatives in 1941 and 1943.

Brinton, Ada Mae Brown (1891-1988)

“Sunshine and Rain in Iowa: Reminiscing through 86 years,” 1977, 70pp.

A farm woman who lived near Stuart, Iowa, describes her childhood and married life on a farm during the turn of the century.

View finding aid.

Buckley, Irene Coleman (1904-2006)

“A Handful of Rain: The Life of Irene Buckley,” 1998, 63pp.

The author reflects on her life as a teacher, wife, mother, librarian, and volunteer.

View finding aid.

Burlage, Renetta

Bread on the Table: The Story of Lottie Porter and the Family She Raised, 2009, 150pp.

The life of Lottie Porter, mother of eight, framed by the Great Depression and World War II.


Cano Family

“Leno and Maria, a Success Story,” 1985, ??pp.

A history of the Cano family and the emigration of Magdaleno and María Cano to the U.S. from Mexico in the late 1920s compiled by Vincent Cano.

In the Maria Cano Martinez Papers.

Cech, Annette Marie (1922- )

“Scenes of My Childhood,” 1993, 39pp.

Vignettes of growing up in Chicago, and the influence of the author’s father and grandparents.

“Recollections of Nobelfest, 1989,” undated, 15pp.

A look back at the year Annette Cech’s son, Professor Thomas R. Cech, received the Nobel prize jointly with Professor Sidney Altman “for their discovery of catalytic properties of RNA.”

Christensen, Esther Downs (1895-1987)

“Our Heritage,” 1987, 66pp.

Christensen describes her childhood and married life as a farm woman near Keokuk, Iowa, and her mother’s childhood. It includes an autobiographical statement by her father about his Civil War experience.

Clark, Marie Mountain (1915- )

Dear Mother and Daddy: World War II Letters Home from a WASP, An Autobiography, 2005, 284pp.

In her autobiography, Clark, the daughter of an Iowa dairy farmer who was raised on a 160-acre farm near Des Moines, recalls her childhood and provides comments that illuminate her letters home and diary entries during World War II.

Corothers, Margaret Strang (1871-19xx)

“Family History of the McDowall-Wilson, Strang-McDowall, and Corothers-Strang Families,” 1934, 68pp.

View finding aid.

Cox, Louise

“One Facet of a Mother’s Life by One of Her Children,” 1973, 2pp.

Cox writes about her mother, Ida Louise Grilet, who was born in Exira, Iowa, in 1878.

Cruikshank, Esther Flower (1841-1929)

“The Covered Wagon: a reminiscence of the migration of the Flower family to Iowa from their Vermont home in 1857,” 1927, 26pp.

Curtis, Josephine Mae Teeter (1903-2007)

Like Ordinary People, An Illustrated Iowa Social Biography of Josephine Mae Teeter Curtis and Her Times, 1903-2007, by Bruce Curtis, 2008. 448pp, 518 footnotes.

The autobiographical writings of the author’s mother, Josephine Curtis, a native of Jefferson County, Iowa, are woven into the fabric of this biography, which places the life and times of its subject within a broad and richly annotated historical framework.


Daniels, Alice Grossman

After the Flowers: Life Beyond Widowhood, 1996, 110pp.

A columnist for the Jewish Federation News and the Des Moines Skywalker, Harris writes about her life after the death of her fifty-eight-year-old husband.

Daum, Charlotte Christine

“Railroad Widow,” 1936, 13pp.

The pioneering experiences of Charlotte Daum, the wife of a railroad section hand.  Daum was the mother-in-law of Iowa state legislator Minnette Doderer.

In the Minnette Doderer Papers.

Dix, Dorothy Unmack (1908-1997)

“My Autobiography,” 1982, 13pp.

View finding aid.


Edgar, Lois (1922- )

“The Life of Lois Eleanor Edgar,” undated.

Memories of growing up poor on an 80-acre farm near Clarinda, Iowa.

Elliott, Selma Leckness (1902-1990)

“Glimpses of Selma Leckness Elliott, an Autobiography,” second edition, 2002,116 pp.

Elliot describes her childhood in Hardin County, Iowa, and life in Hayfield, Minnesota, during the Depression.

Emmert, Martha Atkins (1923- )

Common Clay, 1997, 344pp.

This memoir depicts the life of a Muscatine farm girl who became a missionary in Africa where she worked with her husband for thirty-five years.

Engstrom, Doris

“There is a Time…,” 1985.

Engstrom describes how her family left their farm south of Sioux City, Iowa, to become missionaries in Nigeria.

Ettleman, Margaret Bobbitt (1877-1984)

“Memoirs of Margaret Bobbit Ettleman,” 1951, 40pp.

Vignettes of nineteenth-century Iowa include homesteading near Sidney, Iowa, teaching in a one-room country school, and the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago.

View finding aid.


Farnham, Almira Ames (1800-1896)

“Grandmother Farnham’s 96 Years of the Nineteenth Century,” Leslie Dunn, undated,  4pp.

A glimpse into the life of a pioneer woman from New England who settled near Morley, Iowa, in 1859.

View finding aid.

Fatherson, Editha Phillips (1835-1925)

“Pioneer Pieces: Recollections of Early Trails and Early Days in Southeastern Iowa,” 1915, 20pp.

Fatherson’s memories of Van Buren County, Iowa, where her family settled in 1839, include descriptions of Indian trails, the “border war” with Missouri, the Civil War, and the arrival and expulsion of the Mormons.

In the Ruth Fatherson Taylor Papers.

Ferns, Grace (1909-2005)

“One-Room Rural School: Memories and Anecdotes,” 4pp, undated.

The story of a country school teacher who became the Rural School Supervisor for Johnson County, Iowa, in 1950.

View finding aid.

Fuller, Ruth Beard  (1907-2008)

“Memories of a Long Life,” 2001, 117pp.

Fuller describes her childhood in Mt. Ayr, Iowa, and her married life in Centerville where she owned and operated a small farm implement factory with her husband. She reflects on her political involvement and on realizing her dream of flying when she become a pilot in the Civil Air Patrol during World War II.

In the Ruth Beard Fuller Papers.


Gabrielson, Alice Eck (ca. 1908-1998)

“The Gabrielson-Eck Connection, a Family History,” 1994, 153 pp.

Gabrielson wrote about her childhood and her father, a Norwegian immigrant who was a railroad track worker in Dayton, Iowa.

Gangestad, Rosa Knutson (1867-1943)

The reminiscences of Gangestad give insight into the nineteenth century life of a Norwegian family in Humboldt County, Iowa.

In the Rosa Knutson Gangestad Papers.

Gebers, Nellie

“They Called her Ned,” ed. Don Gebers, 1994.

Artist from Ira, Iowa, who studied with Grant Wood.

View finding aid.

Giddings, Marie H. (1908- )

“History of the Harris Family, 1898 to approximately 1930,” 1980, 135 pp.

Detailed account of early twentieth-century family, farm, and rural community life in Kossuth County, Iowa.

View finding aid.

Gilmore, Blanche Basye (1873-1970)

“Recollections,” 1970, 53pp.

This memoir describes the author’s life in Iowa City after her husband, Eugene Gilmore, was appointed President of the University of Iowa in 1934.

View finding aid.

Girard, Madge (1904-2000)

“Memories of Madge Clark Girard,” 1972-1991, 155pp.

In this handwritten account, a Blackhawk County farm woman describes growing up in rural Iowa.

View finding aid.

Glick, Mary Bell (ca. 1907- )

“Adolph Gfeller Family: A Pictorial History of a Pioneer German Swiss Farm Family in Kansas,” 1978, 36pp.

Glick writes about her grandparents and her father who was a blacksmith.

“Our 64 Years: 1932-1996,” 101pp.

Glick describes married life in Chicago, Nebraska, New England, and Iowa City.

Grow, Esther Mae Christensen (1891-1993)

“Esther Mae Christensen Grow’s Writings,” 1993, 38pp.

Reflections on growing up in western Iowa and Nebraska include the author’s experiences of student life in country school, college, and as a teacher.


Hadley, Zelinda Griffith (1841-1937)

Zelinda (Griffith) Hadley Story,” 1933, 9pp.

Hadley describes family life in Harveysburg, Ohio, including the year her family survived smallpox, ca 1843, and the 1852 move to Iowa, where they purchased a farm in Warren County.

Hagen, Mary Doebel (1922- )

Untitled memoir, undated, 52pp.

Hagen reflects on her childhood on a north Iowa farm.

View finding aid.

Hanson, Gina Josephine (1886-1989)

Jennie: Memoirs, ed. Barbara Hanson Bulman,1996, 339pp.

The memoirs of Jennie Hanson, who was born in Webster County, Iowa, to a family of Norwegian ancestry.

The Knut J. Hanson Heritage: “This I Remember,” compiled by Gina “Jennie” Hanson Hanson, original, 1958, revised, 1981, 252pp.

The Johannes K. Hanson Heritage, Gina (Jennie) Hanson Hanson, 1981, 231pp.

The John Hanson Heritage, Something More: The History of Norwegian Immigrant Families that Came to Iowa, Barbara Hanson Bullman and Robert L. Lillestrand, 1982.

Hanson, Ina Lee (1913- )

“Story of the Life of Ina Lee Hanson,” 1997, 19pp.

Hanson reflects on daily life on a family farm near Dolliver, Iowa, and her work as a hired girl to save money for her education, and describes her work in Spirit Lake following the death of her husband in 1973.

Herr, Margaret Alton (1917- )

My Journey Through Life, ca. 2001, 209 pp.

Herr tells of growing up in Iowa City, the Depression, marriage, World War II, and life after her divorce in 1986.

Hoit, Judy Heron (1945- )

My World Has Access Now, 1992, 52pp.

Raised on a farm south of Coon Rapids, Iowa, Hoit writes about her life after contracting polio in 1949, and her later advocacy for disability access and awareness.

View finding aid.

Houghton, Dorothy Deemer (ca.1890-19xx)

Reflections, 1968, 84pp.

Houghton gives insight into growing up as the daughter of a judge in Red Oak, Iowa, and her later travels abroad as the president of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs.

Hull, Judith Yarger (1936- )

“Discovering My World, 1936-1958,” 2001, 192pp.

Hull provides glimpses into growing up in a variety of Iowa towns including Greenfield, Iowa Falls, Massena, Osage, and Waverly, and describes her college years at Iowa State University.


Jacobsen, Irene Rasmussen (1913- )

Life in the Middle Lane, 1990, 516pp.

A central Iowa farm woman from Story County writes about her student years at Simpson College in 1929, teaching rural school in the 1930s, and married life.

Jefferson, Jacquelyn Fishbaugh (1930-  )

“The Nearness of Youth:  A Collection of Childhood Memories,” 2003, 77 pp.

Vignettes of growing up on a farm near Shenandoah, Iowa, provide insight into school, childhood games, and high school jobs.

Johnson, Elaine Rexroat

Sunshine and Shadows – Three childhoods: Father, Mother and Daughter, 1902-1946, 2010, 179pp.

A series of vignettes provides insight into family life in Iowa and Kentucky from the turn of the twentieth century to the end of World War II.


Kaiser, Elsie Baker

“Things I Remember,” 1980, poems.

Reminisences through poetry of an Iowa farm woman and artist from Blackhawk County.

Karbula, Marie Hay (1936- )

Footpaths of My Life, A Memoir, 2007, 93pp.

Vignettes about her parents, her childhood on a farm near Otho, Iowa, and her two brothers who served in the Second World War.

Knopp, Lisa (1956- )

Flight Dreams: A Life in the Midwestern Landscape,1998, 286pp.

Knopp was raised in a working-class family in Burlington, Iowa, and pursued a career as a writer, receiving her PhD from the University of Iowa.

Koppenhaver, Della Tenley (1904- )

“On the Farm in the 1920s,” 1958, 9pp.

“This is How I Remember Alice on her 73rd Birthday, February 15, 1981,” 1981, 7pp.

Brief reflections of an Iowa farm woman describe growing up on farms in eastern Iowa.

Krysan, Germaine “Gerry” (1916- )

I Followed a Different Drummer, 1997, 92pp.

In this memoir, Krysan details the impact of the Depression on her middle-class family in Calmar, Iowa, and examines her non-traditional decision to forego marriage and pursue a career in nursing.  Krysan served in the WAAC during World War II and worked for the World Health Organization in Iraq from 1956 to 1966.


Lage, Ella Elmegreen (18xx- )

“Me and Laura,” undated, 221pp.

Ella writes of her parents Edward and Laura Elmegreen who married in 1883 and farmed near Davenport, Iowa.

Lage, Gladys Moeller (1912- )

“I Remember,” 1992, 61pp.

Lage’s descriptions of early twentieth century farm life in Scott County, Iowa, include music, holidays, chores, and attending one-room country school.

Lynch, Elizabeth (1908- )

“A Trunk and its Chips,” 1991, 166pp.

The memoir of a Dubuque County farm woman of Irish descent who became a rural school teacher and taught special education.

View finding aid.

Lutz, Olga Cornelius (1909- )

“Thanks Lord! Stories from my Life,” ca. 1997, 52pp.

Lutz, the daughter of German immigrants, looks back at family life in Jackson County, Iowa.


Middlebrook, Wilda Jacobson (1923- )

My Cup was half full, 1997, 275pp.

Middlebrook provides details of her childhood and early career as a one-room school teacher from Fremont Township, Iowa, during the Depression.

McCown Family

“The Roads of History: A Chronicle of My Life,” by Robert McCown, ca. 2005, 49pp.

The author of this family history describes growing up in Sioux County, Iowa, where his father owned a hardware store.

McMurry, Alice (1908- )

“Through the Years,” ca. 1989, 60pp.

“Eight Decades on the Prairie,” undated, 95pp.

Vignettes of life in Promise City and Sioux Rapids, Iowa.

View finding aid.

Merritt, Gretchen Kuever (1915- 2005)

“Gretchen Merritt, 1915-2005: A Remembrance,” compiled by Bruce Merritt, 2005, 93pp.

The life of Gretchen Merritt, a graduate of the State University of Iowa in 1938, who married the editor of the campus newspaper, The Daily Iowan, in 1937, and raised two sons.

Messenger, Ruth Perkins (1899-2000)

“Memories,” ca. 2000, approx. 150pp.

View finding aid.

Miller, Ruth Smith

Heroes Among Us: Memories of Twelve Iowa WW II Veterans, ed. Jane Cox, 2002, 295pp.

This book includes the memoir of Ruth Smith Miller who served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps during the Second World War. Miller grew up on Iowa farms near Clemons and Whitton.

Mirich, Pearl (1910- )

“An Account of Marie Rumble’s Life and Her Family,” 2002.

This description of family life includes the homesteading experience of the author’s sister, Marie Rumble, in Wyoming, Colorado, and Washington State.  It was written by Pearl Mirich, when she was 92 years old.

View finding aid.

Morris, Esther Hasson (1916- )

“Grandpa’s Legacy: Short Stories of My Life,” undated, 49pp.

Morris describes the general store that was owned and operated by her grandparents in College Springs, Iowa, and her childhood after the death of her father in 1922.

Mullen, Peg (1917- )

Unfriendly Fire: A Mother’s Memoir, 1995, 156pp.

The memoir of Iowa peace activist, Peg Mullen, whose son, Michael Mullen, was killed by “friendly fire” in Vietnam in 1970.

In the Peg Mullen Papers.


Neff, Ortha (1915- )

“Memoirs,” 2005, approx 100pp.

Neff writes about farm life, Girl Scouts, World War II, and religion.

In the Ortha P. Neff Papers.

Nelson, Jacqueline Person (1929- )

“Childhood Memories,” ca. 2000, 13pp.

“Greencastle Airport and how it came into being,” ca. 2000, 5pp.

In these two brief reminiscences, Nelson describes growing up during the Depression in Burt, Iowa, and starting a new business, known as Green Castle Aviation, Inc, with her husband, in 1976.


Parsons, Mary Jane (1842-1938)

“The Patchwork Quilt: Memoirs of the Pioneer Life of Mary Jane (Mrs. Byron) Parsons (1842-1938) as told to Myrtle Parsons,” 1935, 179 pp.

A detailed account of nineteenth-century life in Wisconsin and Iowa including descriptions of homesteading and the impact of the Civil War.

View finding aid.

Pelton, Beulah Meier (1914- )

We Belong to the Land: Memories of a Midwesterner, 1984, 211pp.

A portrait of Iowa farm life from the 1920s to the 1950s.

Peterson, Cordelia Maring (1872-19xx)

Answering the Call: My Life Story, ca. 1940, 48pp.

Born and raised in Chillicothe, Iowa, Peterson writes of how she became a preacher.

Pieper, Dora Ann Walker (1911-1991)

“School Day Memories,” and other reminiscences, 1980s, 24pp.

Pieper tells of school, family, and the town of Donnan in Fayette County, Iowa, where she was born.

Place, Dorothy J.  (1921- )

“The War Years 1938-1945: the Story of how World War II Shaped my Life” 1993, 70pp.

An account of teaching and living on military bases during WWII, based on Place’s diary.

“Dorothy’s Writings,” 2000, 46pp.

Twenty-six brief reminiscences on a wide range of topics draw on her experiences in Emmetsburg, Iowa.

View finding aid.

Porter, Lottie (1894-1976)

Renetta Burlage, Bread on the Table: The Story of Lottie Porter and the Family She Raised. 2009, 147pp.

The story of a Conesville, Iowa, farmwoman, as tolde by her who provided for her eight children during the Depression, World War II, and following the death of her husband in 1946.


Rigney, Viola Holthaus (1913- )

“Tall Corn Tales: Recollections of an Iowa Farm Girl, 1912-1939,” 2005, 138pp.

The memoir includes descriptions of her German immigrant grandparents who settled in Colesburg, Iowa, in 1869, and her own experiences of country school, farm chores, and the seasonal aspects of family and farm life.

Rosik, Miriam Newsom (1896- )

“My Life Story,” 1981, 59pp.

The story of the life of Miriam Newsom Rosik as told to her daughter, Shirley Rosik, details Newsom’s childhood on a 77-acre farm in Kentucky, and her move to Somers, Iowa, in 1914.

“Memories of Mother: Miriam Newsom Rosik,” 1981, by Helene Rosik Tracy.

Ruff, Henrietta

“Remembering 35 Years of Teaching,” 1996, 7pp.

A description of teaching high school in the Amana Colonies from 1941 to 1974.

“I Remember, I Remember,” 1985, 10pp.

Memories of the Amana High School as a student, teacher, and volunteer from the 1930s to the 1980s.

View finding aid.


Scanlon, Winnifred Hiatt (1909-1997)

“Once Upon a Long Ago,” 1996, 122pp.

Scanlon describes growing up in Stockport, Iowa, where her father owned a drugstore.

View finding aid.

Schallau, Elsie Boddacker (1913-1997)

“My Life in the 20th Century,” 1998, 58pp.

Schallau reflects on farming and family life in two Iowa counties–Iowa and Benton.

Scheetz, Helen (1921- )

“Beside the Still Waters,” 1988, 54pp.

The memoir of a Johnson County housewife and secretary who describes growing up in DeSoto, Iowa, during the Depression.

View finding aid.

Schumacher, Florence Krogman (1919- )

“My Iowa Farm Memories,” 2000, approx. 150pp.

Vignettes of of growing up on the “Sunnyside Stock Farm” in Plymouth County, Iowa, include descriptions of animals, farm machinery, and barn dances.

Schutte, Lois McIntyre (1928- )

Hearts, 1991, 236pp; Times Change,1993, 106pp.

View finding aid.

Skramstad, Anna Margaret (1921-2001)

Untitled memoir, undated, 20pp.

Skramstad reflects on her childhood and education in North Dakota.

Skrjabina, Elena (1906-1996)

Coming of Age in the Russian Revolution: the Soviet Union at War, Vol. 4 , Second Printing, 1988. Translated and edited by Norman Luxemburg.

Elena Skrjabina, a professor of Russian at the University of Iowa and the daughter of a member of the last Russian parliament before the 1917 Bolshevik revolution, recounts her childhood in pre-revolutionary Russia and her later life in the United States.

In the Helene Scriabine Papers.

Smith, Laura Gibson (ca.1890-ca.1973)

“Almost Pioneers,” 1983, 179pp.

Gibson recounts her 1913 to 1916 homesteading experience in Wyoming.

In the Laura Gibson Smith Papers.

Smith, Marcella Henley  (1909- )

Confetti, 1999, 154pp.

The author reflects on her childhood on a Monroe County, Iowa, farm and her family’s move to the town of Albia.

In the Marcella Henley Smith Papers.

Sprout, Edith (1895-1979)

“Memories,” 1978, 27 pp.

Reminiscences and photographs of Edith Sprout’s childhood home near Kingsley, Iowa.

View finding aid.

Swalin, Maxine (1903- )

An Ear to Myself, 1996, 145pp.

Swalin writes about growing up in Waukee, Iowa, about her marriage and the making of the North Carolina Symphony Orchestra.

Swanson, Lois Eleanor (1922- ) ??


Teeple, Velma Skott (1913- )

“Buckhorn, a Memoir,” 2001, 70pp.

Teeple writes of growing up in the rural community of Buckhorn, Iowa, farm chores, butter and cheese making, blizzards, children’s clothing, and the Depression.

View finding aid.

Tharp, Rosemary Fleming (1921-1994)

“The Spring of Our Lives: the War years,” 1992, 32pp; untitled memoir, 1992, 44pp.

The first memoir describes Tharp’s experience as a WAVE during World War II; the second describes her childhood and family life in Cedar Falls, Iowa, where her father was a rural mail carrier.

Thornhill, Esther (ca. 1915- )

“My Memories,” 1986, 31pp.

The author reflects on growing up near Mapleton, Iowa, raising her family, and how she managed when her husband was in the military during World War II.

Trimble Family (1883-1999)

“My Life Story,” and “Memories of Mom,” by Marie Trimble Jeffers, 1998 and 1999, 8pp.

“Stories told by Gladys,” 1989, 5pp.

Two sisters, Gladys Trimble Leith and Marie Trimble Jeffers, reminisce about their childhood on a farm in western Iowa.

View finding aid.

Trummel, Eleanor Eyestone (1915- )

“Growing up Eleanor: My Life and Times,” 2002.

Trummel reflects on growing up near Washington, Iowa, and working her way through high school in Fairfield during the Depression.

In the Eleanor Trummel Eyestone Papers.


Vallejo, Martina Morado

“The Labor of a Mother,” 1951, ??pp.

Reminiscence/diary translated into English and transcribed by her daughter, Florence Vallejo Terronez. Morado reflects on her migration from Mexico to Kansas with her mother in 1914 and her later experiences in the Midwest.

In the Florence Vallejo Terronez Papers.

Vandervelde, Marjorie (1908- )

My Magic Tree House: An Iowa childhood in the early 1900s, 2004, 84pp.

Vandervelde describes growing up in Le Grand, Iowa, the daughter of a country doctor.

In the Marjorie Vandervelde Papers.

Van Haaften, Mabel Korver (1902- )

Untitled reminiscence, 1932-1990s. 27pp.

A farm woman from the Pella, Iowa, area recalls her childhood.

View finding aid.

Van Horn, Ernella (1932- )

Untitled reminiscence, 2001, 3pp.

Recollection of her family’s participation in early women’s basketball in Iowa.

View finding aid.

Van Kley, Jeanne (1915- )

“A Family Together,”1987. 100pp.

A memoir of adolescence, courtship, marriage, and raising a family through and after the Depression on a farm in northwest Iowa.

View finding aid.

Visser, Virginia Schuyler (1922- )

“Through the Years, 1940-1945,” 2003, 289pp.

The daughter of a pharmacist in Danbury, Iowa, describes her training to become a nurse and her experience as an officer in the U. S. Army Nurse Corps during World War II.


Wahl, Martha Stoessel (1916- )

The Flavor of Our Lives: Grandma Stacy’s Memoirs,1995, 312pp.

Vignettes written from the perspective of a mathematician span one hundred years of living and include descriptions of turn of the century Ottumwa, a Colorado cabin, and atom bashing in Iowa City.

In the Martha Stoessel Wahl Papers.

Wessel, Doris (1924 – )

“My Life as an Iowa Farm Woman,” 3pp.

Wessel recalls her childhood on a small farm near Maquoketa, Iowa.

Winchell, Clara Woodmansee (1854- )

“Stories of my Childhood,” undated, 101 pp.

This glimpse into the life of a family that settled in Amity, Iowa, in 1857, describes setting up house, farming, the death of a younger sister, and abolitionist acitvities in Iowa during the Civil War.

Wicker, Maxine

“My Life in the Midwest,” undated, 2pp.

A reminiscence of life near Sioux City, Iowa, during World War II and the author’s subsequent teaching career.

Wolfe, Zelda Babcock (1901-1995)

“Memoirs of Zelda Babcock Wolfe,” undated. 50pp.

A Riceville, Iowa, mother, homemaker, and teacher recalls growing up on a farm in north central Iowa, illness, and family events.

View finding aid.

Wookey, Faye Elsie Tomlinson (1916-)

“Life on a Montgomery County Iowa Farm,” 2000, 30pp.

Wookey describes growing up on a farm near Red Oak, Iowa.

View finding aid.


Yelland Family

“Yelland Family Memoirs,” 2000, 48pp.

A collection of the memoirs of Yelland family members who farmed near Clear Lake, Iowa, starting in the late nineteenth century.


Zimmerman, Doris

An untitled memoir of Zimmerman’s participation in civic activities in northwest Iowa.



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