Guide to the Mary Louise Petersen Papers

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1947-1996
Creator: Petersen, Mary Louise (1929-)
Extent: 10.00 linear inches.
Collection Number: IWA0309
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Member and president of Iowa State Board of Regents.

Administrative Information

Alternate Extent Statement: Photographs in Box 2 and map case
1 audiocassette [AC474]
Artifacts in Box 2

Access: The papers are open for research.

Use: Copyright held by the donor has been transferred to The University of Iowa.

Acquisition: The papers (donor no. 423) were donated by Mary Louise Petersen in 1997.

Preferred Citation: Mary Louise Petersen papers, Iowa Women's Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City.

Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Address: 100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone: 319-335-5068
Curator: Kären Mason

Biographical Note

Mary Louise Anneberg was born on February 18, 1929, in Carroll, Iowa to Dr. and Mrs. Walter Anneberg. The valedictorian of Carroll High School class of 1947, Anneberg continued her academic career at the State University of Iowa (now the University of Iowa). In 1951, Anneberg graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor degree in Liberal Arts. She married H. Rand Petersen in February 1951. They had four children: Lynn, Allen, Katherine and Steven.

Mary Louise Petersen was appointed to the Iowa State Board of Regents in 1969 and served as president from 1973 to 1981. She belonged to a number of other organizations, including the Association of Governing Boards of Colleges and Universities. She served on the board of trustees for the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Petersen was also active in Girl Scouts, the United Methodist Church and the Republican party.

Petersen was honored with the Harlan Community Leadership Award in 1969. In 1983, she won both the State of Iowa Distinguished Service Award and the University of Iowa Distinguished Alumni Service Award.

Content Description

The Mary Louise Petersen papers date from 1947 to 1996 and measure sevententen linear inches. The papers are arranged in nine series: Awards and diplomas, Board activities, Correspondence, Egyptian workshop, Magazines and programs, National Governors Association, Newspaper clippings, Speeches, Photographs and Artifacts.

The Board activities series (1971-1988) consists of a few miscellaneous papers from several boards on which Petersen served, including the Iowa State Board of Regents, Board of Directors and for the Carnegie Corporation.

The Correspondence series pertains mostly to her service to the Board of Regents. Letters are primarily from educators or legislators in the state of Iowa. There are, however, a few letters from friends.

The Egyptian workshop series (1981) consists of itineraries and programs from the workshop on "The Role of Regional Universities in the Rural Areas, which Petersen attended in Cairo, Egypt in May 1981.

The Magazines and programs series (1970-1986) includes articles about Petersen and programs from events Petersen attended for different organizations.

The National Governors Association series (1981) pertains to the associations 1981 meeting in Atlantic City, New Jersey. There, Petersen was one of eleven private citizens honored for distinguished service to state government.

The Speeches series (1970-1987) includes speeches given for the State Board of Regents and at conferences discussing education and trusteeship.

The Photographs series (1969-1980) shows Petersen receiving her award at the National Governors conference, speaking at a University of Northern Iowa commencement ceremony in 1983, and attending the rededication of the Old Capitol Building in Iowa City in 1976. Other photographs include Petersen speaking at Iowa State University during the rededication of the football stadium in 1975 and attending a campaign speech by Gerald Ford in 1976. Petersen is also shown in Guam and Taiwan, and with family and colleagues.

Related Materials

Jonathan Dolliver papers. (State Historical Society of Iowa, Iowa City): Dolliver was Petersen's grandfather. His papers include a talk Petersen gave at a Board of Regents meeting during the student unrest of the 1970s as well as some material pertaining to her mother.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Browse by Series:


This collection is indexed under the following subject terms.

Personal Names:
Petersen, Mary Louise, 1929-

Corporate Names:
Iowa State Board of Regents
National Governors' Association
Council on Postsecondary Accreditation

20th century

Women in education
Educational leadership
Education, Higher
Public universities and colleges

Public officers
Government employees

Geographic Names:
United States -- Iowa

Genre/Form of Materials:
Cultural artifacts
Personal papers
Sound recordings