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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the E. Virginia Mowry papers

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1956-2000
Creator: Mowry, E. Virginia (1909-1989)
Extent: 3.00 linear inches.
Collection Number: IWA0345
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Newton, Iowa teacher who later worked as an adminstrative assistant to James Cash Penney of J. C. Penney Company.

Alternate Extent Statement: Photographs in box 1.

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. 473) were donated by Gertrude Spaulding in 1997 and 2000.

Preferred Citation: E. Virginia Mowry 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

E. Virginia Mowry was born in Newton, Iowa on November 9, 1909 to Ross R. and Mary Edith Mathews Mowry. She graduated from Newton High School in 1927 and the State University of Iowa (now the University of Iowa) in 1931 before receiving a Master's degree from Columbia University.

Mowry taught at schools in Knoxville, Iowa and Newton, Iowa, as well as New York and Connecticut before joining Bell Telephone Company in 1946 as a personnel administrator. In 1967, she joined the J.C. Penney Company as an administrative assistant to James Cash Penney. While there, Mowry established the company's archives as well as the J.C. Penney Memorial Museum and Library in Hamilton, Missouri.

The E. Virginia Mowry papers date from 1956 to 2000 and measure 3 linear inches. The papers include an essay on Albert Cummins, governor of Iowa (1902-1908) and a U. S. senator, written by Mowry for her Master's degree. An oral history interview with Mowrer conducted by Robert Cubbedge for the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library primarily concerns her father, Ross R. Mowry, who was a political consultant to Herbert Hoover. Also inlcuded are materials relating to her work at J.C. Penney, as well as a photograph and obituaries.

Browse by Series:

  • Box 1:
  • Biographical information - 1990
  • Albert Cummins essay, undated
  • Gertrude Spaulding (sister) - 2000
  • J.C. Penney: General - 1956-1987
  • J.C. Penney: Book "Creating an American Institution: The Merchandising Genius of J.C. Penney" by Mary Elizabeth Curry - 1993
  • Oral History - 1969
  • Photograph, undated