The University of Iowa Libraries

Skip to content
print page banner

Collections Relating to Women and War

Women in the Armed Forces

AYDELOTTE, MYRTLE KITCHELL (1917- ). Papers, 1934-1994. 20 linear feet. Professor of nursing (1957-1976) and dean of the College of Nursing (1949-1957); director of nursing for the University of Iowa Hospitals and clinics (1968-1976).  Kitchell served in the Army Nurse Corps during World War II.

BACON, EVELYN CRARY (1916-1997).  Papers, 1917-2000. 2.3 linear feet.  Teacher, decorated veteran nurse and pioneer in the field of nursing education, Bacon served as a captain in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps during World War II and participated in the invasion of Normandy .

BOYUM, BERNICE LARSON (1922- ). Papers, 1943-1948, 1993 and undated. 1 linear inch. Ellsworth , Iowa , woman who served in WAVE during World War II.

DRYDEN, MURIEL ANNE (1911-1993). Papers, 1935-1990. 2.5 linear feet. Federal government employee who held various positions during her career, including White House mail analyst and served in WAVE during World War II.

IRWIN, CONSTANCE FRICK (1913-1995). Papers, 1918-1995. 12 linear feet. Author, librarian, and professor of library science who was a WAVE during World War II.

LICHTY, MARION COX. (1915- ). Papers, 1942-1989. 10 linear inches. Waterloo, Iowa native who served in the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (later the Women’s Army Corps) from 1942 to 1946 and in the United States Air Force Reserve (Women’s Air Force) from 1948 to 1965.

LIERS, LOUISE (1887-1983)
Papers,1911-1983 (bulk 1917-1919). 5 linear inches. World War I Army nurse from Clayton, Iowa.

LYON, PAULINE (1922- ). Papers, 1884-1994. 1 linear foot and audiovisual materials. Waterloo , Iowa , native who served in WAVES during World War II and later worked for the American Red Cross.

NEFF, ORTHA P. (1915- ) Papers,1944-2006. 1 linear inch and audiovisual materials. Red Cross staff member who was stationed in Okinawa and Hawaii during World War II.

NEWSOME, LOUANE L. (1906-). Papers, 1943-1997. 1 linear inch. Armed Services librarian at Camp Lockett in Campo, California , during World War II, and professor at the University of Iowa School of Library and Information Science for twenty years.

ORMOND, KATHY (1945- ). Papers, 1966-1993 (bulk 1968-1970). 1.25 linear feet. Red Cross recreation aide who worked with soldiers in Vietnam from July 1968 to October 1969.

PENDLETON, ROBERTA. (19? – ). Papers, 1943-1996. 2.5 linear feet. Sioux City resident who was a WAVE during World War II.

STEVENS, HARRIET ADELINE. (1909- ). Papers, 1928-1994. 5 linear inches. Teacher of nutrition education and dietetics; member of the United States Army as a 2nd Lieutenant, serving as a Medical Hospital dietician at Camp Gordon, Georgia from March 1942 to February 1945.

THARP, ROSEMARY. (1921-1994). Papers, 1940s-1994. 1 linear inch. Cedar Falls native who served in the WAVES during World War II.


Women on the Home Front

AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. 1998-1999. 0.5 linear inches. Brief memoirs of Iowa Farm Bureau women written and donated to the Rural Women’s Project.

BOLLER, BETTY. (1924 -). Papers, 1991, 0.25 linear inches. Des Moines wife and mother who worked as a secretary during World War II and served as both a Girl Scout and Boy Scout leader.

CLARK, MARION JONES (1916- ). Papers, 1930-1995. 10 linear inches. Bacteriologist and assistant professor at the University of Iowa from the 1940s to approximately 1960.  During World War II Jones kept precise financial records and her collection includes her war ration books and mileage ration records.

COY, GRETCHEN ANTON (1923- ). Papers, 1943-1995 (bulk 1943). 7 items. Artist and teacher in Okoboji , Iowa , who participated in the Curtiss-Wright Aeronautical Program during World War II.

DAVIS, LAURA (1916-1993). Papers, 1880, 1918-1993 (bulk 1937-1985). 8.75 linear feet and audiovisual material. Social worker in Cedar Rapids , Iowa , from the 1930s though the 1960s.

ENTRE NOUS (IOWA CITY, IOWA). Records, 1914-1992. 1.1 linear feet. Women’s drama study club founded in 1914 in Iowa City. Club members made surgical dressings for the American Red Cross during World War I and held book drives to collect books for American soldiers during World War II.

GERBER, ZELLA MAY. (1904-1997). Papers, 1943-1947. 4 linear inches. A secretary who worked at the Oak Ridge Atomic Plant in Tennessee from 1944 to 1945.

HAMBLIN, DORA JANE (1920-1993). Papers, 1937-1993. 5.8 linear feet and audiovisual materials. Iowa native who wrote for the Cedar Rapids Gazette, LIFE magazine, and other periodicals.  In 1944 she joined the American Red Cross and was later named overseas staff correspondent for The Red Cross Currier.

HATA, KAY (1916-2000).  Oral history. Japanese-American nurse who was imprisoned in a Japanese internment camp during World War II; Hata became the first Asian-American employee at Broadlawns Hospital in Des Moines.

HILL, CATHERINE SNEDEKER (ca. 1843-1890). Papers, 1854-1871. 6 linear inches. Illinois student who moved to Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.  Some of Hill’s correspondence contains references to the Civil War.

IOWA NURSES ASSOCIATION. Records, 1904-1989. 83 linear feet. Founded in 1904 to promote standardized nursing education; works for better working conditions and to improve the status of nurses.  Following World War II, the INA made efforts to include men in their association.

LARIMER, ANN. Letters, February-July 1865. Queen City, Iowa, resident who was married to John Larimer. The collection includes letters she wrote to her husband while he was serving in the Civil War.

LEWIS, THELMA. (1904-1988). Papers, 1947-1967. 4 linear inches. Iowa City mayor in 1961; served on the city council from 1958 to 1963.  During World War II Lewis worked as an aide in the State Department in Washington D. C. and traveled to Moscow in 1947 where she served as an information specialist during the drafting of the Marshall Plan.

McHENRY, MARY SEARS. (1834-1912). Papers, 1865-1998. 1 linear inch. Diary and account book of Rockford College graduate as a young bride of a Civil War officer; primarily recounts a visit to Illinois from Denison, Iowa, where she was acting county recorder and telegraph operator while her husband remained in the Armed Services.

MULLEN, PEG (1917-2009). Papers, 1968-1999 (bulk 1970s). 6.5 linear feet. Anti-Vietnam War activist whose son, Michael, was killed by “friendly fire” in Vietnam in 1970; her story became the basis for the book Friendly Fire by C.D.B. Bryan.

NEAL, EDITH.  (1916-2007).  Papers, 1931-1997.  7.5 linear inches.  Known as the ‘Vietnam Mail Lady,’ Neal corresponded with over 200 servicemen stationed in Vietnam from 1966 to 1969.

PHELAN, EMMA LOU LEEPER. (1926- ). Papers, 1945, 1995, 1998. 6 items. Brooklyn, Iowa, native who worked as a riveter for the Ryan Aeronautical Company in San Diego, California, 1944-1945.

POWNALL, DOROTHY ASHBY. (1895-1979). Papers, 1918-1974. 2.5 linear inches. Journalist and columnist for the Cedar Rapids Gazette; women’s editor for the Iowa City Press-Citizen. Some articles relate to Camp Dodge , Iowa during World War I.

PROTEUS CLUB (DES MOINES, IOWA). Records, 1897-1996. 2.5 linear feet. Women’s study club organized in 1896 by college graduates for their intellectual improvement. Includes one letter from the Woman’s Peace Party, 1915, and one letter from the Woman’s Section of the Navy League of the United States, 1915.

REED, SUE M. (1910- ). Papers, 1934-1996. 5 linear inches. Republican Party activist and officer of Iowa and National Federations of Republican Women, 1950s-1970s.  Reed worked in the War Department from 1935 to 1945.

REGER-WILKINSON, MARY FRANCIS  (1909- ). Papers, 1942-1946.  4 linear inches.  Social worker who worked for the American National Red Cross during and after World War II.

SKOTT, CLARA. (1888-1994). Papers, 1897-1994. 2.75 linear feet. Free-lance writer, home economics teacher and civic leader who wrote articles and diaries concerning life in Iowa, China, and Wisconsin.

STONE, BETTE BROOKS. (1927-).  Papers, 1941-1993, 7 linear inches.  Mapleton, Iowa high school student during World War II who sent telegrams for Western Union in the wake of the war.

TYLEE, MAGDALENA “HELEN” (1894-1988) Papers, 1917-1988. 2.25 linear feet. A German war bride who came to Iowa in 1922. During World War II she ran the family farm while her husband was serving in the armed forces.

VANDERVELDE, MARJORIE (1908-). Papers, 1837-2002. 5.7 linear feet. Papers include correspondence from her son, Kent Vandervelde, who was stationed in Vietnam. Also included is the photo album of her brother, Glenn Mills, which chronicles his experiences in the Navy during World War I.

WELCH AND ANGRICK COLLECTION. Collection, 1880-1995. 3.75 linear feet. Material relating to the Heart of Hawkeye Council of Campfire Girls, The Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, and the Iowa Department of the Woman’s Relief Corps.

WHITLEY, CORA CALL. (1862-1937). Papers, 1917-1937. 1.1 linear feet. Clubwoman and conservationist who was involved in the Council of National Defense Women’s Committee during World War I.

WILSON, RUTH.  (1924-2002).  Papers, 1957-2002.  2.5 linear inches.  A journalist who worked for the Stars and Stripes in postwar Europe, during World War II she worked for the Daily Iowan as an editor.


Women and War in other Countries

ALLEN, BENITA (1911-1983).  Memoir, 1981. 130 pages. A collection of short stories by Iowa City artist Benita Allen describing her childhood memories of Russia, including the impact of World War I and the 1917 revolution.

BRAVERMAN, ROSALIE (1910- ). Oral history and memoir, 1996 and undated. 0.25 linear inches.  Polish immigrant who arrived in the United States in 1921. In Youthful Journeys in Poland and Germany Braverman recalls how the outbreak of World War I affected her hometown of Grajewo, Poland.

SCRIABINE, HELENE. (1906-1996) Papers, 1937-1996 (bulk 1960-1993). 1.75 linear feet and audiovisual materials. Author and Professor of Russian at the University of Iowa, who immigrated to the United States in 1941 after surviving the siege of Leningrad.

WAR BRIDES OF WORLD WAR II: IOWA EXPERIENCES
Records, 1946-1996, bulk 1994-1996, 1 linear inch and audiovisual materials. 1995 honors thesis of University of Iowa undergraduate student, Rachel Casteel.