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Guide to the California Federation of Women's Clubs records 1900-
MS 11  
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Collection Details
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  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Administrative History
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms
  • Related Material
  • Separated Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: California Federation of Women's Clubs records
    Dates: 1900-
    Collection number: MS 11
    Creator: California Federation of Women's Clubs
    Extent: 85 linear ft. 75 boxes
    Repository: University of California, Santa Cruz. University Library. Special Collections and Archives
    Santa Cruz, California 95064
    Abstract: Convention, board minutes and reports, club histories, yearbooks, journals, and articles recording the general history and activities of the California Federation of Women's Club and the individual clubs within the region.
    Physical location: Stored offsite at NRLF: Advance notice is required for access to the papers.
    Language: English

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research

    Publication Rights

    Property rights reside with the University of California. Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records and their heirs. For permission to publish or to reproduce the material, please contact the Head of Special Collections and Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    California Federation of Women's Clubs records. MS 11. Special Collections and Archives, University Library, University of California, Santa Cruz.

    Acquisition Information

    Boxes 1-33, 35-39 received in October 1983
    Boxes 34, 40-61, 98-101 received in June 2004
    Boxes 61-69 received September 2009

    Administrative History

    The California Federation of Women's Clubs (CFWC, http://www.cfwc.org ) is part of an international community service orginization that focuses on projects that "promote education, eliminate illiteracy, encourage productive citizenship, preserve nations natural resources, encourage healthy lifestyles, fight to prevent crime, support the Arts, and contribute to international understanding".

    The State Federation was founded in January 17, 1900 with forty clubs, representing six thousand women. Mrs. Robert J. Burdette, Los Angeles, became the first president. Same year, in May 1900 the California Federation joined a General Federation of Women's Clubs ( http://www.gfwc.org ), the oldest women's volunteer organization in the United States. The Federation endoresed and supported the Child Labor Law, which was enacted in 1906. In that same year, the Federation urged its affiliates to give financial assistance to women seeking a higher education or industrial training and employment, giving birth to the scholarship idea. The organization also campainged for equal suffrage, which was achieved in a state constitutional amendment election in October 1911.

    Today this non-profit organization is divided into twenty-six districts that are governed by a president and an executive board. It's volunteer based membership covers the cities and towns across the California.

    Scope and Content

    The material documents the California Federation of Women's Clubs general history and its' administrative activity as well as the individual club histories.


    The archive is divided into eight series; CFWC History & Information (1900-2000), CFWC Convention and Board Minutes, Reports and Projects (1921-2004), Club Histories (1988-2004), Publications (1900-2004), Misc. Newspapers & Magazines (1906-1955), Objects (ca. 1925-1940), Photographs (1919-2000) and Microfilm (1916-2004). The publications series contains both bound and unbound periodicals and yearbooks The Clubwoman, later retitled as The Federation News, The California Federation News, currently known as The California Clubwoman.


    The general arrangement follows a chronological order, where as the Club Histories are divided into Districts and then by alphabetically by club name.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


    California Federation of Women's Clubs--Archives.
    Women--Societies and clubs--Sources.
    Women--California--Societies and clubs--History.

    Other Index Terms Related to this Collection

    California clubwoman California Federation news Clubwoman Federation news

    Related Material

    MS 73 Santa Cruz Women's Club Records, 1907-1982

    Separated Material

    There are 34 microfilm reels of CFWC minutes & reports (1927-1990), yearbooks (1984-1990), and periodicals (1916-1990) available for use at McHenry Library, Microforms Room. Consult library's online catalog for more complete content details. See call number HQ1905.C3.
    Linda Phipps, Eras of Elegance : Fashionable Clothing 1850-1935 : The Anna Lee Shetler Collection, 1995, Gift of Tustin Area Woman's Club, Spec. Coll. GT596 .P495 1995,
    Women's Club of Palo Alto, Women's Club of Palo Alto : Minutes 1894-[1920], Spec. Coll. HQ1906.P35 W66 1990 v.1-3
    Women's Club of Palo Alto, Woman's [i.e. Women's] Club of Palo Alto : summary of minutes, 1894-1920, Spec. Coll. HQ1906.P35 W66 1990b c.2