1400 Washington AveAlbanyNY
1400 Washington AveAlbanyNY

American Association of University Women, Albany Branch Records

1913-1992

Funding support for arranging and describing this collection provided by Dr. and Mrs. Eugene P. Link.

PDF Version

Abstract

These records document the history of the Albany Branch of the American Association of University Women from 1913 - 1992. The records relate chiefly to women's issues; particularly higher education, general education, membership, international relations, legislation, World War II, employment, teaching, community projects and Albany, NY.

Summary

Creator:
American Association of University Women--Albany Branch
Date Coverage:
1913-1992
Quantity:
5.9 cubic ft.

The mission of the Albany Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) is threefold: 1) unite women alumnae of colleges and universities for practical educational work, 2) increase their effectiveness in the community for the solution of social and civic problems, and 3) support the National and State Divisions of the AAUW. Since its formation in 1890, the Albany Branch's activity has been the monthly general meetings, featuring guest speakers from the community. Other activities include board meetings, weekly study groups, workshops, surveys, field trips, conferences and conventions, fundraising events, and financial contributions to the AAUW Educational Foundation. It is through these activities that the Albany Branch of the AAUW pursues its goals and seeks to fulfill its purpose.

The Albany Branch's administrative duties as defined by the 1921 AAUW Charter are carried out by a board of annually elected executive officers, all of whom must be AAUW members. The executive officers include one president, two vice-presidents, two secretaries and one treasurer. The purpose of the Executive Board is to administer to the business affairs of the Albany Branch. The Executive Board is also responsible for submitting the annual budget to the branch and establishing special tasks forces and committees. The Executive Board Meetings are typically held three times a year in one of the board members' homes (The General Meetings are held monthly in public meeting places such as hotels and community centers). Additional Executive Board Meetings may be called to order either by the president or at least two members of the Executive Committee.

The Eastern New York Branch of the Association Collegiate Alumnae (currently the Albany Branch of the AAUW) was formed on Oct. 18, 1890 under the direction of Melville Dewey, Secretary of the University of the State of New York, and Director of the State Library. (Other than the Albany Branch organizational histories, there are no records in the collection documenting Melville Dewey's involvement with the Albany Branch). A constitution and by-laws were drafted (last revised in 1991), executive duties defined, officers elected, and goals identified. The early aims of the Albany Branch were to work towards meeting women's educational needs and to interest school girls in pursuing college careers.

The Albany Branch began as an affiliate of the Association of Collegiate Alumnae (ACA) which was first conceived on Nov. 28, 1881 in Boston when 11 women college alumnae met to discuss the possibility of forming an organization to: 1) provide political and financial support to women pursuing higher education and 2) find new opportunities to use their training. The ACA (later the American Association of University Women) was officially formed on Jan, 1882 with the purpose of uniting women alumnae of different institutions in "practical educational work." During the next thirty years the ACA expanded to admit localized branches, develop membership policies, committees and research study groups, and offer graduate fellowships to women pursuing higher education.

The Eastern Branch of the ACA (later the Albany Branch of the AAUW) began its first real influential work in 1892 when members cooperated with the ACA in investigating women's wages and contributed $10.00 to the ACA fellowship fund. (Other than the Albany Branch organizational histories, there are no records documenting the activities of the Albany Branch prior to 1926). Throughout the 1890s, the Albany Branch (then the Eastern New York Branch of the ACA) expanded its range of interests to include current events such as the trade union movement, child labor, planning, eugenics, and women's suffrage. Membership began to increase at a prolific rate during the early years of the 20th century as more women became interested in higher education. The Eastern New York Branch of the ACA also worked on the war effort, contributed to the Belgian Relief Work Project, and established a three year membership to support war orphans.

During the 1920s and 1930s, the Albany Branch developed committees (executive, membership, and publicity) and study groups designed to research and discuss special issues such as drama and music, French War Orphans, and Americanization. Following 1921, the Association of Collegiate Alumnae and the Southern Association of University Women merged into the American Association of University Women and the Eastern New York Branch of the ACA officially became the Albany Branch of the American Association of University Women. It accepted the responsibility to promote the aims and ideals of the AAUW determined by the national headquarters in Washington D.C.

During World War II, there was much discussion at branch meetings regarding the political, economic, and social effects of the war on humanity and society as a whole. The Albany Branch supported the Emergency Control Bill, urged the extension of rationing programs, and hosted lectures dealing with the special consumer problems caused by the war.

The years following World War II saw the Albany Branch pursuing the study of educational development on all fronts. The Dr. Josephine Glasgow Fellowship was established in 1951 and was the first of 42 such fellowships designed by the Albany Branch to encourage women to pursue higher education. In December 1950, the AAUW Albany Branch president appeared as a guest of a radio show hosted by the Conference of Christians and Jews. Topics included international and human relations, and achievements made by the Albany and National Branch of the AAUW in these areas.

Following the lead of the AAUW, the Albany Branch redefined its committee structure during the late 1950s and 1960s. In 1963, the AAUW and Albany Branch turned their attentions to four areas of interest: community problems, cultural interests, education, and world problems. The AAUW also called for all member branches to become more involved and outspoken in community affairs. AAUW national president Alice Beeman addressed this issue during a speech in Albany "In the past, much of the emphasis has been on study and study programs. Now the people who know must act, action is also a way of learning."

Attempts by the Albany Branch to apply this new approach to their own agenda can be seen as early as 1973 when the Legislative Committee lobbied the New York State Governor to reconsider his announced decision to seek legislative requirement for mandatory lifetime imprisonment of drug pushers in New York. The Albany Branch argued that "the solution to the problem lies in medical, educational, and social approaches of a positive sort rather than in criminal prosecution." The Albany Branch also co-sponsored workshops dealing with developing effectiveness and leadership skills in 1986 - 1987.

These records document the history of the Albany Branch of the American Association of University Women from 1913 - 1992. While the overall physical condition of the records is good, several folders have been photocopied for research use in order to preserve the originals. (See Appendix 1) Because the collection was received with order already partially established, it was possible to preserve the provenance without extensive rearranging. Only the Committee Files have been reconstructed in the attempt to aggregate the records that distinctly deal with each respective committee.

Records include minutes, annual reports, subject files, correspondence, bulletins, yearbooks (address books), scrapbooks and ephemera spanning 1913-1992. The bulk of the records document activities from 1938-1965 and 1981-1992. The records relate chiefly to women's issues; particularly higher education, general education, membership, international relations, legislation, World War II, employment, teaching, community projects and Albany, NY. Correspondents include the AAUW New York State Division, AAUW National Headquarters, other AAUW New York State branches and local chapters of community service organizations such as the American Red Cross, YWCA, Public Teachers Association, Albany Consumers' Council, Albany Council of Social Agencies, Women's Joint Legislative Forum, Albany Public Library, and several New York State government agencies.

Throughout the collection, information regarding education, membership and legislative issues abound. Annual Reports in the 1960's contain a significant amount of records pertaining to legislation supported by the Albany Branch. Discussions involving World War II and its effects on women and society are contained in the Correspondence with Community Organizations Series and the President Subject Files: War Employment Folder.

The Committee Files (1937 - 1990) are of particular interest because they provide information relating to the branch's non-administrative activities. The series is broken down into seven subseries, each corresponding to a particular committee: Branch History, Fellowship, Hospitality, Membership, Program, Public Information, and the Antique Study Group. Records documenting other committees and study groups are missing despite the fact that they should also be included in the collection. Two subseries of note include Fellowship Committee Files and the Branch History Committee Files. The Fellowship Committee Files document the Albany Branch's efforts to support the AAUW Educational Foundation and to provide financial assistance to women seeking graduate and post-graduate education. Similar information is located in the President's Subject Files (Series #3). The Branch History Committee Files contain histories and memoirs dating back to the 1930s as well as documentation of special events held by the Albany Branch.

There are many significant gaps in the collection. For instance, only the Bulletins, occasional President's Subject Files and Committee Files document the Albany Branch's activities during the 1970s. Records form the 1920s and 1930s are similarly scarce and fragmented. The collection is strongest from 1941 - 1965; virtually all series containing records from this time frame are consistent, containing only minor gaps. The gaps of each individual series are discussed in the series descriptions.

Appendix 1

The photocopied folders include:

1) General Meetings Minutes (1926 - 1938)

2) General Meetings Minutes (1939 - 1954)

3) President's Subject Files: War Employment (1943)

4) Fellowships Committee Chairman's Correspondence (1939 - 1940) Folder 1

5) Fellowships Committee Chairman's Correspondence (1939 - 1940) Folder 2

6) Public Information Committee Press Releases (1975 - 1976)

7) Antique Study Group Chairman's File (1959 - 1975)

The collection is organized into the following series: 1. Minutes of the Executive Board Meetings, 1938-1965, 1984-1991; 2. Minutes of the General Meetings: 1926-1964, 1986-1990; 3. President's File: 1921-1992; 4. Annual Reports: ; 5. Committee Files: 1937-1990; 6. Correspondence: 1936-1965; 7. Bulletins: 1941-1990; 8. Yearbooks: 1913-1991; 9. Scrapbooks and Ephemera: 1936-1972.

These records were originally deposited with the Albany Institute of History and Art. On June 22, 1995 the records were physically transferred to the M. E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives and the Memorandum of Agreement between the Association and the University Libraries was completed1995 August 20

Processed by: Eric Roth

Collection record created by: This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on

Published: 2017-04-14 09:53:55 -0400

Encoded in EAD by Jodi Boyle, 2016 December

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Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Identification of specific item, series, box, folder, American Association of University Women, Albany Branch Records, 1913-1992. M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University at Albany, State University of New York (hereafter referred to as the AAUW, Albany Branch Records).

Contents of Collection

Quantity: 0.17 cubic ft.
Arranged chronologically.
The Albany Branch of the AAUW Executive Board (or Board of Directors) is made up of elected officers including the president, two vice presidents, two secretaries, treasurer, and two directors. The purpose of the Executive Board is to carry on the business and administer to the affairs of the branch, establish special task forces and committees and submit the annual budget to the branch. The Minutes of The Executive Board generally run from 1938-1965 and from 1984-1991, and contain the following gaps: 1939, 1941-1947, 1957-1959 and 1966-1983.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1Board Minutes1938, 1940

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1 2Board Minutes1948-1956

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1 3Board Minutes1960-1962

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1 4Board Minutes1963-1965

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1 5Board Minutes1984-1991
Quantity: 0.34 cubic ft.
Arranged chronologically.
The General Meetings of the Albany Branch of the AAUW meet monthly and are open to the public. The meetings comprise the major social outlet of the branch serving to attract new members. The General Meetings are generally held at public meeting places at which the officers relay branch news and proposed activities to the members. Guest speakers are often invited to share their knowledge with the branch community at the General Meetings. Guest lecturers are typically established professionals from the Albany community. Speech topics tend to reflect current social issues and their impact on women and society. The minutes contain the following gaps: 1965-1985, and 1987. The available documentation spanning the years from 1986-1991, are very sparse, however.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1General Meetings Minutes1926-1938

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1 2General Meetings Minutes1938-1954

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1 3General Meetings Minutes1955-1959

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1 4General Meetings Minutes1960-1964

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1 5General Meetings Minutes1986-1990
Quantity: 1.34 cubic ft.
Arranged alphabetically.
The President's File contains records maintained by the Office of the President. The files have been arranged into two subseries: President's Correspondence, 1956-1992, and President's Subject Files, 1921-1992. The correspondence files contain a major gap from 1962-1985. The President's Correspondence Files are arranged chronologically by folder; the documents within the folders are filed in reverse chronological order. The subject files' inclusive dates are 1921-1992, but the bulk of the records represent activities from the 1980s and early 1990s. The documents within the folders have been maintained in their original order.
Arranged alphabetically.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1President's Correspondence1957-1958

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1 2President's Correspondence1958-1959

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1 3President's Correspondence1959-1960

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1 4President's Correspondence1960-1961

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1 5President's Correspondence1986-1987

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1 6President's Correspondence1991-1992

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1 7President's Correspondence1975, 1984-1988
Arranged alphabetically.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 8Albany Citizens for Education1990

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1 9Annual Reports - AAUW Albany Branch1983-1989

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1 10Annual Reports - AAUW New York State Division1985-1987

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1 11Annual Reports - AAUW National Division, Washington D.C.1987

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1 12Awards and Certificates1985-1991

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1 13Bulletin Advertising Information1986-1987

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1 14By-Laws, National AAUW Charter1921

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1 15By-Laws, Albany Branch - Revisions and Amendments1934-1991

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1 16By-Laws, Albany Branch1983-1992

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1 17Center for Women in Government1987

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1 18Conferences1987-1989

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1 19Conferences, College Decision Systems Seminar1989

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1 20Conferences, Regional1981-1988

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1 21Conferences, Workshops1990

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1 22Conventions, AAUW Biennial1958

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1 23Conventions, AAUW Biennial1989

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1 24Conventions, AAUW New York State Division1983-1986

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1 25Conventions, AAUW New York State Division1987-1989, 1992

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1 26Diversity Policy1988

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1 27Educational Foundation (1 of 2)1986-1990

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1 28Educational Foundation (2 of 2)1986-1990

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1 29Educational Foundation - Annual Reports and Directories1988-1991

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1 30Events, 50th Anniversary1940

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1 31Events, 100th Anniversary1990

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1 32Events, Fashion Show1991

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1 33Events, Field Trip to Val Kill1990

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1 34Finances, Audit Reports1984-1987

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1 35Finances, Receipts and Disbursements1991-1992

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1 36Finances, Treasurer's Reports1985-1992

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1 37International Relations Handbook1983

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1 38Leadership - Reference materialca. 1990

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1 39Leadership Rolesca. 1990

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1 40Legislation, Equity Action Vote Project1986

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1 41Legislation, Legal Advocacy Fund1984-1989

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1 42Legislation, New York Legislative Forum1986-1992

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1 43Legislation, misc.1986-1989

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1 44Marketing, Image1986

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1 45Marketing, Visibility Training Manualca. 1990

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1 46Membership Informationca. 1988

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1 47Miscellaneous (programs, minutes, etc.)1980-1986

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1 48Needs Assessment Program1981

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1 49Newsletters, Action Guide1987-1988

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1 50Newsletters, Leader in Action1987, 1989-1992

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1 51Officers' List, Albany Branch1988-1989, 1990-1992

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1 52Panel Discussion Guidelines - Albany BranchUndated

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1 53Publications and Mailings, DirectoriesMisc. dates

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1 54Publications and Mailings, President's CommunicationsMisc. dates

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1 55Publications and Mailings, President's Mailings1988

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1 56Publications and Mailings, President's Mailings1989

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1 57Publications and Mailings, President's Mailings1990

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1 58Publications and Mailings, President's Mailings1991

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1 59Publications and Mailings, Reference Material1976-1985

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1 60Publications and Mailings, Reference Material1984-1990

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1 61Sales Catalog1987-1988

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1 62Surveys, Arts Survey of Albany1938

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1 63Surveys, AAUW Branch Biennial Survey1991

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2 1Surveys, Membership1961-1962

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2 2Surveys, Membership1987

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2 3Surveys, Questionnaires1933-1956

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2 4Surveys, School Policy Survey Project1988

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2 5Topics of Interest1962-1963

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2 6War Employment1943

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2 7Women's Issues1985-1986

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2 8Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA)1988-1989
Quantity: 0.5 cubic ft.
Arranged chronologically.
The Annual Reports of the AAUW Albany Branch contain the reports filed by the executive officers, committees and study groups to document their activities at the end of every fiscal year. Annual Reports from the1980s and early1990s may be found in the President's subject files, and committee reports are also found in the Committee Files.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1Annual Reports1940-1941

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1 2Annual Reports1941-1942

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1 3Annual Reports1942-1943

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1 4Annual Reports1943-1944

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1 5Annual Reports1944-1945

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1 6Annual Reports1945-1946

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1 7Annual Reports1946-1947

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1 8Annual Reports1947-1948

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1 9Annual Reports1948-1949

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1 10Annual Reports1949-1950

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1 11Annual Reports1950-1951

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1 12Annual Reports1951-1952

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2 1Annual Reports1952-1953

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2 2Annual Reports1953-1954

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2 3Annual Reports1954-1955

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2 4Annual Reports1955-1956

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2 5Annual Reports1956-1957

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2 6Annual Reports1957-1958

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2 7Annual Reports1958-1959

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2 8Annual Reports1959-1960

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2 9Annual Reports1960-1961

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2 10Annual Reports1961-1962

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2 11Annual Reports1962-1963

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2 12Annual Reports1963-1964

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2 13Annual Reports1964-1965
Quantity: 0.67 cubic ft.
Arranged alphabetically.
These files document the work performed by individual committees and their respective chairmen. The series is broken down into seven subseries, each corresponding to a particular committee: Branch History Committee, Fellowship Committee, Hospitality Committee, Membership Committee, Program Committee, Public Information Committee, and the Antique Study Group. Documents within the Committee Files folders are filed chronologically excepting the chairmen's correspondence files, which are filed in reverse chronological order.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1Antique Study Group Chairman's File1959-1975

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1 2Branch History Committee Chairman's File1937-1990

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1 3Branch History Committee - History Material1938-1965, 1989/1990

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1 4Branch History Committee - Events1937-1938

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1 5Fellowships Committee Chairman's File1955-1960

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1 6Fellowships Committee Chairman's File1960-1961

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1 7Fellowships Committee Chairman's File1963-1964

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1 8Fellowships Committee Chairman's Correspondence (1 of 2)1939-1940

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2 1Fellowships Committee Chairman's Correspondence (2 of 2)1939-1940

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2 2Fellowships Committee Chairman's Correspondence1963-1964

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2 3Hospitality Committee Chairman's File1954-1969

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2 4Membership Committee Chairman's File1979-1990

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2 5Membership Committee Membership Surveys1961-1962

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2 6Program Committee Chairman's File1942-1989

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2 7Program Committee Program Schedules1984-1989

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2 8Public Information Committee Press Releases1975-1976

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2 9Public Information Committee Pamphlets1969

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2 10Public Information Committee Correspondence1973-1976
Quantity: 1.0 cubic ft.
Arranged chrnologically.
The Correspondence files are separated into three subseries: Correspondence with Community Organizations, 1941-1953; Correspondence with AAUW Headquarters and New York State and Division, 1951-1957; and General Correspondence, 1936-1965. Documents within the folders are filed in reverse chronological order. The only gaps in the series occur in the General Correspondence files: 1944-1946 and 1951-1952.
Arranged chrnologically.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1941-1942

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1 2Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1942-1943

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1 3Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1943-1944

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1 4Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1944-1945

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1 5Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1945-1946

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1 6Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1946-1947

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1 7Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1947-1948

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1 8Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1949-1950

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1 9Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1950 -1951

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1 10Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1951-1952

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1 11Correspondence with Community Service Organizations1952-1953
Arranged chronologically.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 12Correspondence with AAUW Headquarters and New York State Division1951-1953

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1 13Correspondence with AAUW Headquarters and New York State Division1953-1954

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1 14Correspondence with AAUW Headquarters and New York State Division1954-1955

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1 15Correspondence with AAUW Headquarters and New York State Division1955-1956

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1 16Correspondence with AAUW Headquarters and New York State Division1956-1957
Arranged chronologically.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 17Correspondence (General)1936-1943

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1 18Correspondence (General)1947-1950

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1 19Correspondence (General)1953-1954

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1 20Correspondence (General)1954-1955

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1 21Correspondence (General)1955-1956

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1 22Correspondence (General) (1 of 2)1956-1957

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1 23Correspondence (General) (2 of 2)1956-1957

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1 24Correspondence (General)1958-1959

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1 25Correspondence (General)1959-1960

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1 26Correspondence (General)1960-1961

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1 27Correspondence (General)1961-1962

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1 28Correspondence (General)1962-1964

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1 29Correspondence (General) (1 of 2)1963-1964

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1 30Correspondence (General) (2 of 2)1963-1964

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1 31Correspondence (General)1964-1965
Quantity: 0.5 cubic ft.
Arranged chronologically.
The AAUW Albany Branch Bulletins are distributed monthly to inform members of meeting dates and locations, changing policies, current positions on legislative issues, upcoming events, and dues information. The bulletins contain no gaps.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1Bulletins1941-1946

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1 2Bulletins1947-1951

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1 3Bulletins1952-1954

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1 4Bulletins1955-1958

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1 5Bulletins1959-1965

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1 6Bulletins1966-1971

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1 7Bulletins1972-1975

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2 1Bulletins1976-1981

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2 2Bulletins1982-1984

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2 3Bulletins1985-1990
Quantity: 0.34 cubic ft.
arranged chronologically.
The Albany Branch Yearbooks contain the names, telephone numbers, and addresses of all members of the branch. The yearbooks are text only, there are no photos. The yearbooks contain no gaps.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 1Yearbooks1913-1940

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1 2Yearbooks1940-1960

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1 3Yearbooks1960-1980

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1 4Yearbooks1980-1990
Quantity: 1.0 cubic ft.
Arranged alphabetically.
This series contains scrapbooks of newspaper clippings and documentary material of the Albany branch's activities, members, and interests. Other ephemeral items contained in the series include photographs, proclamations of the Mayor of Albany, clothing and tote bags.
BoxFolderContentsDate

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1 AAUW T-shirt, yellowUndated

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1 AAUW tote bag, whiteUndated

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1 AAUW tote bag, redUndated

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1 ERA apron, blueUndated

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1 Christmas song bookUndated

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1 Career Fair photographs1981

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1 Proclamations, City of Albany New York, Office of the Mayor1989, 1991

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1 Scrapbook #1, Publicity Notes1941-1957

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1 Scrapbook #2, Publicity, public information1963-1972

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1 Scrapbook #31950-1962

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1 Scrapbook #41936-1941