National Organization for Women, Savannah Chapter records
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National Organization for Women, Savannah Chapter records

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: National Organization for Women. Savannah Chapter.
Title: National Organization for Women, Savannah Chapter records
Dates: 1970-1984
Extent: 8.25 cubic feet (18 boxes)
Identification: MS 2179

Biographical/Historical Note

On June 30, 1966, Betty Friedan, Kay Clarenbach, Pauli Murray, Caroline Davis, Richard Graham, and 28 other civil rights activists met in Washington, D.C., and founded the National Organization for Women (N.O.W.). Established as a private, non-profit organization, N.O.W.'s mission provided "action to bring women into full participation in the mainstream of American society now, exercising all privileges and responsibilities thereof in truly equal partnership with men." The group would grow to be the largest organization of feminist activists in the United States, including 500,000 contributing members and 550 chapters in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Savannah's National Organization for Women comprises one of those 550 chapters. Established in May of 1972, the organization's members worked for women's equality locally. Led by Sandra Mitzel, U.S. Department of Labor Wage-Specialist, a Savannah NOW founding member, and the organization's first President, the group met bi-monthly at the Savannah science Museum on Paulsen Street and later at the YWCA located on Oglethorpe Avenue. Savannah NOW leadership rotated annually for the positions of President, Vice President, Secretary and Public Relations, and Treasurer, and some leaders included chapter conveners Beth Kinsler, Judy Dubus, and Alice Durden, as well as Alice Bales and Jan Bohannon. Savannah NOW began publishing a newsletter, the Savannah NOWsletter, in April 1974. It highlighted recent legislation and news stories concerning women as well as Savannah NOW activities and upcoming events by topic. Although Savannah NOW members participated in and contributed to Georgia Chapter, Southeast-Region, and National Chapter NOW conferences and events, Savannah NOW traditionally focused its efforts on the Savannah area. Members formed task forces to identify challenges facing women and then worked in groups to target those challenges and end sex discrimination locally. Topics included a lack of female representation in politics, sex discrimination in education, the poor portrayal of women in the media, and many more. Although the Savannah NOW records document the years 1970-1984, the organization remains vital and continues in operation today.


Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of the records of the Savannah chapter of the National Organization for Women. The records are organized into nine series: governance; membership; finance; legislative issues; task forces; publications; clippings; audio-visual materials; and visual materials.

The audio-visual materials and the visual materials were separated from the records and housed separately; their original series locations are noted in the collection inventory. The box containing these materials is noted as "VM" (visual materials) in the inventory.


Index Terms

Abortion--Government policy--Georgia--Citizen participation.
Administrative records.
Equal rights amendments--Georgia.
Feminism.
Ferraro, Geraldine.
Mitzel, Sandra.
National Organization for Women. Savannah Chapter.
Photographs.
Presidents--United States--Election.
Rape--Georgia.
Schlafly, Phyllis.
Sex discrimination against women--Law and legislation.
Sex discrimination in education--Law and legislation.
United States. Education Amendments of 1972. Title IX.
Women in mass media.
Women political activists--Georgia.
Women's rights.
Women--Employment-- Law and legislation--Georgia.
Women--Georgia--Societies and clubs.
Women--United States.

Technical Access Restrictions

A cassette player and a film projector are required to access portions of this collection.


Administrative Information

Custodial History

Material was acquired from the creating organization.

Preferred Citation

[item identification], National Organization for Women, Savannah Chapter records, MS 2179, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition Information

Deposit, 1984, 1986. Gifted, 2003.


Restrictions

Access Restrictions

Series 2, Membership, is restricted from use until 2024.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the Georgia Historical Society. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Division of Library and Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Georgia Historical Society as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.


Sponsorship

Encoding funded by a 2012 Documenting Democracy grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Container List

 

SERIES 1:: Governance records

This series consists of five subseries: 1.1, general; 1.2, Savannah Chapter; 1.3, Georgia Chapter; 1.4, Southeast Regional Chapter; and 1.5 National organizational records. The documents include by-laws, charters, correspondence, leadership lists, policy manuals, and minutes. The information is organized alphabetically, providing and operation history of the organization.



SUBSERIES 1.1:: General

Box

Fldr

11Actions; how-to material; and examples
2Miscellaneous information
Speaker's Bureau
3Resource material
4Sample speeches
5Start-up kit; leadership election ballots; material order forms; miscellaneous how-to manuals; policy manuals; stationery



SUBSERIES 1.2:: Savannah Chapter

Box

Fldr

16By-laws and charter, 1974-1975
Coalition building programs
7"Action Together Network"
8"Leadership Savannah", 1977-1979
9Correspondence, 1974-1976
10Meeting planning and goal setting
11-12Minutes and quarterly reports, 1974-1975
13Minutes, 1976
14Minutes, notes, and yearly report, 1981-1982
15Minutes, 1982-1983
16Telephone tree



SUBSERIES 1.3:: Georgia Chapter

Box

Fldr

21Budget, 1984
2By-laws, 1974-1975
3Correspondence from state officials to regional officials, 1978-1979
Leadership
41980-1983
5Executive board meeting, 1983
6-12State Conference, 1974-1979, 1981-1982, 1984
State Council Meeting
131974
141976-1977
151979-1981
16-181982-1984



SUBSERIES 1.4:: Southwest Regional Chapter

Conference
191974, 1976
201982-1983
21Correspondence, 1976
22Leadership roster, undated
23Leadership conference, 1981
24Regional and State Leaders meeting, 1981



SUBSERIES 1.5:: National organizational records

Box

Fldr

31By-laws, 1978
2Legal policies of National NOW, 1975-1976
3Policy manual, 1979
4Statement of purpose, 1966
5Board correspondence, 1976
6-10Board meetings, 1975-1980, 1985
11-16Conferences, 1973-1982
17Correspondence to Credentials Committee, 1978
Leadership
18Board members and President, undated
19Goldsmith, Judy, undated
 

SERIES 2:: Membership records

Restricted until 2024. This series contains correspondence, interested person lists, and contributing member files, organized chronologically.

Box

Fldr

41Correspondence, 1974-1975
2-121974-1984
13Members, undated
14Savannah NOW membership by General House and Senate districts
 

SERIES 3:: Finance records

This series consists of two subseries: 3.1, fundraising; and 3.2, budgets.



SUBSERIES 3.1:: Budgets

This subseries contains items such as check stubs, bank receipts, material receipts, formal budgets, and correspondence that provide an overall financial picture of the listed year. The materials are organized chronologically.

Box

Fldr

51-131971-1983
14Undated
15Deposit book, 1979-1983



SUBSERIES 3.2:: Fundraising records

This subseries contains correspondence, how-to pamphlets, marketing strategies, and material order forms.

Box

Fldr

516Miscellaneous, 1973-1976
17Publications, miscellaneous dates
18Statewide Weekend Giveaway Contest, 1979
19Procedures, undated
 

SERIES 4:: Legislative issues

This series contains records concerning state and federal legislative issues that Savannah N.O.W. targeted for action. The information has been organized alphabetically by topic. A majority of the series relates tot eh Equal Rights Amendment; however, there are other records that concern issues such as abortion and equal employment.
Abortion and reproductive rights

Box

Fldr

61Clippings, 1975-1976
2Correspondence, 1974-1979
3Human Life Amendment, 1982-1983
4Lobbying, 1974-1979
5Resource material, 1973-1979
6Child care, 1979
7Correspondence, 1976
Equal employment

Box

Fldr

68C.E.T.A., 1973-1979
9Correspondence, 1975-1983
ERA

Box

Fldr

610Brochures and pamphlets, undated
11-14Clippings, 1972-1982, undated

Box

Fldr

71Correspondence, 1973-1982
3Election results, 1975-1982
4ERA Deadline Extension Drive, 1977
ERA Georgia, Inc.
5Miscellaneous, 1980-1981
6Newsletters, 1979-1982
Fundraising
7Miscellaneous, undated
8Walk-A-Thon, 1979
9Homemaker's status report, 1977
10Leadership, 1979-1980
Lobbying
11How-to material, undated
12Miscellaneous, 1973-1980
13Miscellaneous, 1973-1979
14 Now Legislative Update newsletters, 1976
Opposition
15Schlafly, Phyllis
16Undated

Box

Fldr

81Political Action research records, 1974
2Press releases, 1974-1975
3Publicity events and rallies, 1973-1981
4-6Reports, 1970-1978, undated
7Speeches, 1973-1979
Supporters
8Undated
9Handbook, 1974
10Legal Defense and Education Fund, 1976-1978
11Lobbying, miscellaneous, undated
12Savannah Legislative Coalition, 1975-1976
 

SERIES 5:: Task forces

This series contains records covering subjects such as women in education. Its focus was Title IX and a monitoring project that examined Savannah's public school system and the level to which girls received equal access to education. Another task force concerned women and the labor market. Records documents the treatment of female laborers within specific companies like General Miss, and J.P. Stevens, as well as correspondence, reports, and resource material on a diversity of labor issues, including affirmative action, the earning's gap, and pregnancy discrimination. Other task forces include the treatment of women in the media, politics, violence against women, and more. The series is arranged alphabetically by topic.

Box

Fldr

91Child care, 1974-1976
2Consciousness-raising, 1975
3Consumer credit, 1974-1979
4Criminal justice, 1975-1976
Education

Box

Fldr

95Acts and amendments, 1972-1976
6Clippings, 1972-1976
7Correspondence, 1975-1980
8Memoranda, 1975, 1979-1980
9Notes, undated
PEER Monitoring Project
10Interviews and surveys, 1980
11Leadership, 1976-1977
12Start-up kit, undated
13 PEER Perspective newsletter, 1979-1981
Reports
141974-1979

Box

Fldr

1011980
2Resource material, 1972-1979
3Speeches, undated
4Feminism and economics, 1975
Labor and employment

Box

Fldr

105 Action Alert newsletters, 1976
6Affirmative action plans, 1973-1976
7Berry vs. University of Georgia case, 1976
8"Careers for Women" reports, 1975-1978
9Clippings, 1974-1976
Compliance enforcement
10Handbook and how-to sheet, 1971
11General Mills boycott, 1975
12Handbook and how-to sheet, 1971
13J.P. Stevens boycott, undated
14Miscellaneous actions, 1975-1976
15Sears, 1974
16Southern Bell employment packet, 1974
17 Compliance newsletters, 1973-1975

Box

Fldr

111Conference flyer, undated
2Correspondence, 1974-1976
3Displaced homemakers, 1982
4Earnings gap report, 1979
5Labor unions: John McCown contract, 1976
6Laws and legislative acts, 1969, 1971-1973
7Maternity benefits; pregnancy discrimination, 1975-1976
8Reports, 1973-1976
9Resource material, 1970-1976
10Revenue sharing complaint process, 1979
11Marriage, divorce, family relations, 1972, 1976
Medial reform

Box

Fldr

1112Advertising, 1975
13"A Matter of Sex" (television special), 1984
14Correspondence, 1973-1976
15"Perfect in Her Place" (media exhibit), 1983
16Resource material, undated

Box

Fldr

121Savannah News Press Monitoring Project, 1974-1975
2Women and minorities in the media, 1977
3Minority women and women's rights, 1974-1975
4Older women, 1973-1976
Politics

Box

Fldr

125Gender gap report, 1982
National
6Correspondence, 1973-1975
7Koop, C. Everett (Surgeon General nominee), 1981
8Walter Mondale, Geraldine Ferraro campaign, 1984
9Regional: segregation in Southern politics, undated
Savannah, Chatham County
10Clippings, 1975-1976
11Correspondence, 1974-1976
State
12Candidate questionnaires, 1976
13Georgia Democratic platform, 1982
Rape

Box

Fldr

131Clippings, 1974-1976
2Correspondence, 1973-1976
3Georgia legislation, 1974-1976
4Resource material, undated
5Storaska, Frederic, 1975-1976
6Reproduction and population, 1975-1977
7Sexuality and lesbianism, 1975-1976, 1979
Task forces

Box

Fldr

138Miscellaneous, 1976, 1979
9WYCA project, 1976
10Women and the arts, 1976
11Women and health, 1974-1976
12Women and poverty, 1974-1976
13Women and religion, 1965, 1973-1976
Violence against women

Box

Fldr

1314Battered wives, undated
15Take Back the Night, 1979-1983
16Toward a Safe Savannah, 1984
Volunteerism

Box

Fldr

13171971-1976
18Georgia Advocacy Program, 1979
 

SERIES 6:: Publications

This series contains brochures, newsletters, pamphlets, and newspapers that the National, Southeast Regional, Georgia, or Savannah Chapter of N.O.W. published, produced, or utilized. They are organized alphabetically within each of the above mentioned categories.

Box

Fldr

141-2Brochures and pamphlets
Newsletters

Box

Fldr

143Georgia Chapter, 1976-1982
4National Chapter, miscellaneous dates
5Other chapters, miscellaneous dates
6Other organizations, miscellaneous dates
7-10Savannah Chapter, 1974-1983, undated
11Southeast Region Chapter, miscellaneous dates
Newspapers
Do It Now

Box

Fldr

151Advertising costs
21976
3Miscellaneous newspapers, 1978, 1981
National NOW Times
4-71977-1980

Box

Fldr

161-61981-1986
7-8 Southern Feminist, 1985-1986
 

SERIES 7:: Clippings

This series contains a small box of miscellaneous news articles related to women and women's issues. They are organized chronologically.

Box

Fldr

171-3News articles: miscellaneous women's issues, 1973-1984, undated
 

SERIES 8:: Audio-visual materials

This series contains two audio cassette tapes and two film reels. The first is a 1984 presidential campaign message on audio cassette tape. The other audio cassette tape and film reels pertain to a film entitled, "Woman NOW."

vm_box

Fldr

11Presidential Campaign Message, 1984.
Audio cassette tape (moved from Series 4, box 12, folder 8)

vm_box

Fldr

12"Woman NOW" (film)
Audio cassette tape and two film strips (moved from Series 5, box 11). Film strips are in small box outside folder
 

SERIES 9:: Visual materials

This series contains two photographs. The first is from 1974, showing members tabling for the Equal Rights Amendment. The second is a 1984 photograph of the Savannah NOW members.

vm_box

Fldr

13Unmarked photograph
Shows women standing behind a desk gathering support for the Equal Rights Amendment. Also shows to ERA posters (moved from Series 4, box 8, folder 8)

vm_box

Fldr

14Savannah NOW members, 1984.
The photograph shows members from left: Ellie Lathrop, President; Debbie Kearney; Barbara Miller; Cheryl Brackin; Judy Weaver (hidden); Barbara Allen; Amy Allen (Barbara's daughter); Julia Staffor; and Sandy Mitzel. The photo also lists the photographer as Joy Heitmann (moved from Series 2, box 4, folder 12)