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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the Ruth Wilson papers

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1957-2002
Creator: Wilson, Ruth (1924-2002)
Extent: 2.50 linear inches.
Collection Number: IWA0498
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Journalist who worked for the Stars and Stripes in postwar Europe.

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. 863) were donated by Bu Wilson and Joseph Gingery in 2002.

Preferred Citation: Ruth Wilson 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

Ruth Wilson was born on July 11, 1924 in Wayne, Nebraska. She attended grade school in Wayne, until the Wilson family moved to Iowa so her father could receive his doctorate degree. While attending high school in Iowa City, Wilson was introduced to journalism and held several positions pertaining to the subject, including state president of the high school journalism group. Wilson attended the University of Iowa, and began working at the Daily Iowan. After graduating from the University of Iowa with a Baccalaureate of Arts degree, she was hired as the telegraph editor for the Cedar Valley Daily Times in Vinton, Iowa, and then at the Telegraph Herald in Dubuque, Iowa. Here she served as a reporter, assistant state editor, and then the state editor. Developing a desire to travel, Wilson obtained a position in Germany for Stars and Stripes, the Army newspaper. Wilson lived in Darmstadt where she gained experience and traveled the European continent. Upon returning to the U.S., Wilson was hired at the Milwaukee Journal, and remained there for twenty-five years, eventually working her way up to the contact editor position.

Wilson married Joe Gingery, a widower with whom she had worked at the Milwaukee Journal, on August 31, 1980, and they both kept their original last names. They traveled around the world together between the years 1989 to2000, and together compiled a book, The Forty Best Exotic Trips on the Planet. Wilson died unexpectedly on July 16, 2002.

The Ruth Wilson papers date from 1957 to 2002 and measure 2.5 linear inches.

The papers are comprised of correspondence and the book The Forty Best Exotic Trips on the Planet. The correspondence dates from 1957 to 1959, and contains letters to her parents from Germany where Wilson worked for the Stars and Stripes. The letters and postcards contain observations of Post-War Europe, and information concerning her professional life. The Forty Best Exotic Trips on the Planet is a compilation of journal entries and photographs of Wilson and her husband's many worldwide experiences between 1989 and 2000. The collection includes Wilson's obituary and a memorial testimony given by Joseph Gingery.

Browse by Series:

  • Box 1:
  • Stars and Stripes informational booklet
  • Correspondence to parents - 1957
  • Correspondence to parents: January-August - 1958
  • Correspondence to parents: September-April - 1958-1959
  • Correspondence to parents: Postcards - 1957-1958
  • The Forty Best Exotic Trips on the Planet
  • Obituaries and memorials - 2002