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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the Des Moines Women's Club records

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1888-2012
Creator: Des Moines Women's Club (1885-)
Extent: 2.25 linear feet.
Collection Number: IWA0858
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Civic and philanthropic organization.

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. 1175) were donated by Lorna Truck in 2012.

Preferred Citation: Des Moines Women's Club records, 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

The Des Moines Women's Club was founded in 1885 as a women's community group. The club was headquartered at Historic Hoyt Sherman Place, a Victorian landmark with a large theater facility that was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1977. Maintaining Hoyt Sherman Place was one of the club's early commitments. Des Moines' first public art gallery was housed in a 1907 addition to the building to display artwork acquired by the club. The club's mission was to foster lifelong learning among its members, to improve the community, and to aid in the preservation and enhancement of Hoyt Sherman Place for the benefit of the general public. To that end, the club hosted fundraising efforts, luncheons, and card parties, awarded scholarships, and held an annual Art Exhibition of area artists with prizes for both professionals and amateurs.

The Des Moines Women's Club records date from 1888-2012 and measure 2.25 linear feet. The bulk of the Des Moines Women's Club records are maintained by the Club at its headquarters, Hoyt Sherman Place.

The records are arranged in three series: Bulletins, Yearbooks, and General Federation of Women's Clubs .

  The Bulletins series consists of the organization's newsletter from 1921 to 1999.

  The Yearbooks record the activities of the Club throughout the year and include calendars, programs, reports, rules and bylaws, and a membership directory, along with board of directors and committee membership lists.  Also included are the club's 1935 articles of re-incorporation and bylaws.

The General Federation of Women's Clubs series consists of a folder of materials about the 1946 convention.

Browse by Series:
Series 4:

  • Series 1: BULLETINS
  • Box 1:
  • Spreadsheet of items donated - 2010
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1921-1934
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1934-1940
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1940-1943
  • Box 2:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1944-1950
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1951-1958
  • Box 3:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1958-1966
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1966-1974
  • Box 4:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1974-1979
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1980-1987
  • Box 5:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club Bulletin" - 1988-1999
  • Series 2: YEARBOOKS
  • Box 5:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club" - 1888-1933
  • Box 6:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club" - 1931-1973
  • Box 7:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club" - 1974-1989
  • Box 8:
  • "Des Moines Women's Club" - 1990-2012
  • Articles of Re-Incorporation and Bylaws - 1935
  • Box 8:
  • Annual convention - 1946
  • Series 4:
  • Box 16:
  • University of Iowa Oral History Project Tape 1 - 2000
    Two Copies, AC 1485; AC 1487