Myrtilla F. Levin was born in Iowa in 1938. She graduated from Drake University in Des Moines with a B.A. in English and was a public school teacher in Des Moines for two years. She married Jack D. Levin and lived with him in Newton, Iowa, where she served twelve years in a variety of local volunteer groups and was lay leader at her Episcopal Church. She was Jasper County Republican Party Chairman in 1972 and 1973, an alternate to the 1972 Republican National Convention, and a member of the state Republican Party Platform Committee in 1974. In 1973 she was elected to a two-year term as mayor of Newton, a post she held through 1975. After leaving office Levin served as head of the Newton Chamber of Commerce and later was executive director of the Des Moines Young Women's Christian Association. In 1986 she was appointed director of the newly created Iowa Business Council.
The papers measure 6 linear inches and date from 1972 to 1997. The papers are arranged in the following series: Republican Party, Newton, Iowa, mayoralty, Iowa Business Council, and Miscellaneous. Most of the material is correspondence directly connected with Levin's service as mayor of Newton and her role as executive director of the Iowa Business Council. The papers do not include any material documenting Levin's work as executive director of the YWCA.
The Republican Party series (1972-1973) contains material from both the state and national conventions in 1972 where Levin was, respectively, a delegate and an alternate. Four photographs show Levin among others at the convention, including a group photo of the Iowa delegates and alternates with then Governor Robert D. Ray. The Jasper County Republican Party folder contains a few letters, mostly congratulations on Levin's appointment to chairman of the Jasper County Republican Central Committee after the convention.
The Newton, Iowa, mayoralty series (1972-1975) consists primarily of correspondence from constituents, such as complaints and inquiries about city sewage service, dumping regulations, parking, road maintenance, and dog licenses; from local corporations, schools and civic organizations asking her to speak and thanking her for speaking; from other government officials, congratulating her on her election, asking her for information, or responding to her requests; and correspondence relevant to establishment of a town civil defense plan, the search for a new police chief, a bond issue to build a new fire station, upkeep on the town pool, and town ordinances. Included are letters from area school children. The newspaper clippings concern Levin's tenure as mayor and her election campaigns.
The Iowa Business Council series (1987-1997) contains correspondence from area businesses regarding ordinances, meetings, tax laws, conventions, and other topics, as well as some personal letters. Also included are several reports prepared by the Iowa Business Council on welfare reform, job creation in animal agriculture, the environment, and technology transfer.
Miscellaneous (1971-1985) consists of a 1985 newspaper article by Levin entitled "Feminist Movement Won't Succeed Until It Helps All" and a few items of memorabilia from the inauguration of Richard Milhous Nixon as President of the United States.
A partial index to correspondents follows the box list.
Alternate Extent Statement: Photographs in box 1.
Access: The papers are open for research.
Use: Copyright has been transferred to the University of Iowa.
Acquisition: The papers (donor no. 32) were donated by Myrtilla F. Levin in 1975 and succeeding years.
Preferred Citation: Myrtilla F. Levin papers, Iowa Women's Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City.