Skip to main content

American Association of University Women, Connecticut Division Records

Identifier: 1988-0003

Scope and Content

The collection contains the administrative records of the Connecticut Division of the AAUW.


  • undated, 1895-2014


The collection is open and available for research. Information about individual members donated in October 2013, in Series XV: Accession 2013-0133, has been restricted until 2023.

Restrictions on Use

Permission to publish from these Papers must be obtained in writing from the owner(s) of the copyright.


The American Association of University Women (AAUW) was founded by Boston University graduate, Marion Talbot, as an organization of female college graduates. On 14 January 1886, sixty-five women met in Washington, D.C., and adopted a constitution for the Association of Collegiate Alumnae (ACA).

The ACA originated the following five policies which have continued to be used throughout the organization's history: only women from qualified institutions are admitted as members; branch formation is encouraged; research is conducted through committees; distinguished persons are invited to present their research before the branches; study groups are encouraged to look at all aspects of education. These were the basic founding principles of ACA.

The first Connecticut branch of ACA was formed in 1892, shortly after Yale University began admitting female graduate students. Miss Lillian Pruden was the first president. During this period, membership was almost solely from New Haven. Because no state-wide organization existed, ACA encountered problems while working on was programs such as the solicitation of Liberty Loans, and it became apparent that reorganization was necessary. On 1 May 1920, the first meeting of the Association of Collegiate Alumnae Branches and College Clubs was held.

Membership lagged during the 1930s due to the Depression, and in the early 1940s, the organization encountered further problems caused by the travel restrictions of World War II. ACA continued its work, however, concentrating on war drives such as the collection of tin cans, paper, and aluminum. During the late 1940s, its activities focused upon the returning veterans and the consequential lowering of female enrollment in universities.

In 1954, after a series of name changes, the organization settled upon the American Association of University Women. Its goals during the 1950s were three-fold: to increase the number of female faculty; to increase focus upon children; and to offer political education in the form of legislative workshops. AAUW embarked on may social, educational, and political projects in the 1960s and 1970s. In 1974, for example, the Connecticut State Division Research Project and Endowment Fund was established, providing money to assist career and academic counseling for adults. Also, a Status of Women Committee was formed to analyze the number of women employed in decision making positions within state government.

Throughout the 1980s and 90s, AAUW has continued to promote legal, social, educational, and economic equity for women in an attempt to move women into policy making positions in all sectors of society. AAUW supports a strong educational system at all levels, having established an educational foundation as early as 1888, and, in 1983, a legal advocacy fund to pursue these goals.


80.25 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The American Association of University Women (AAUW) was founded in 1886 as an organization of female college graduates. The first meeting of the Association of Collegiate Alumnae (ACA) was held in Washington, D.C., on January 14, 1886. The first Connecticut branch of ACA was formed in 1892, shortly after Yale University began admitting female graduate students. The ACA was reorganized in 1920 and on May 1 the first meeting of the Association of Collegiate Alumnae Branches and College Clubs was held. The name was finally changed to AAUW in 1954. AAUW continues to promote legal, social, educational, and economic equity for women in an attempt to move women into policy making positions in all sectors of society.


Series I: Organization and Administration (undated, 1902-1988) consists of information about the structure of AAUW. This series includes minutes and correspondence dating to the 1920s, as well as by-laws, directories, membership materials and financial information (ledgers, journals and budgets).

Series II: Programs (undated, 1903-1988) records AAUW's involvement with educational, cultural and topical interests. The education files include Higher Education reports from 1972-1973, a 1941 Board of Education study, and records from the Senior Courtesy Awards. This series documents AAUW's cultural interests and international relations. Topics range from science and law to revolution in modern China.

Series III: History and Anniversaries (undated, 1892-1980) includes a brief history of the national organization, a scrapbook and files on celebrations (Connecticut Division's 50th anniversary).

Series IV: Publications (1934-1988) contains press releases, copies of the national publication, Charter Oak Leader, and state newsletters dating back to 1934.

Series V: Projects (undated, 1938-1987) is a diverse set of materials. Some of the projects are political in nature. AAUW's participation in election night coverage and a study on women in state government, for example. Other topics include (social) leadership workshops and the Coalition on Women's Issues; (education) Teacher of the Year and Library Projects.

Series VI: Fellowships (1895-1988) contains records of fellowships given under the following names: Alice Hamilton, Claire Fulcher, Margaret Morris, and Martha Hoag. Lists of names and three books about idealism and scholarship are included.

Series VII: Legislative Activity (1937-1988) outlines AAUW's legislative program from 1937-1938. Also included are newsletters from 1937-1986 and ERA efforts from 1951-1978.

Series VIII: Publicity (1941-1988) includes articles, brochures and photographs.

Series IX: Branches (undated, 1912-2009) is arranged into seven subseries: Greenwich, Hartford, New Canaan, Orange-Milford, Other, Subject files and Scrapbooks. The series contains information on all twenty-five ConnecticutAAUW branches. Included here are minutes, reports, records and scrapbooks detailing branch projects.

Series X: National (1951-1988) focuses on materials produced and distributed by the National office. The national charter, by-laws, legislative history, recruiting information and policy notes are filed here. Projects such as Leaders in Action, Civil Defense and Action for Equity can also be found in this series. The one subseries, International, contains materials from or about the international branches of the AAUW.

Series XI: Memorabilia (undated, 1973-1981) contains convention banners (4 from New Canaan branch), citations and related items. The Robin was done by Joan Weaver and Doris Makris.

All series except for X and XI are arranged alphabetically.

Series XII: 1993 Addendum (undated, 1912-1992) consists of materials added to the collection in 1993. Arranged into four subseries: Administrative, Branches, Scrapbooks and Publications. Administrative: includes annual reports, by-laws revisions, membership information, data on the Nestle Boycott, tax information and Women in Leadership files. Branches includes files of the Clinton, Norwalk, Norwalk-Westport and Waterbury branches. Scrapbooks holds news clippings collected by the Norwalk and Waterbury branches. Publications contains a memoir by Virginia Crocheron Gildersleeve as well as a book review.

Series XIII: 1996 Addendum ( undated, 1960s-1990s).

Series XIV: 1998-2010 Addenda (undated, 1940s-2005).

Series XV: Accession 2013-0133 (undated, 1967-2011), consists of administrative records, manuals, notes, by-laws, correspondence, newsletters, meeting minutes, Budget reports, forms, yearbooks of the Connecticut shoreline and Greater Waterbury branches.

Custodial History

The collection was donated to the University of Connecticut Foundation in December 1987. The records were transferred to the Historical Manuscripts and Archives Division of the University Libraries (Archives & Special Collections) upon receipt.

Acquisition Information

Historical Manuscripts and Archives (now Archives & Special Collections) received the materials as a transfer from the University of Connecticut Foundation in 1987. Subsequent donations have been made directly by the historian of the Connecticut Division to Archives & Special Collections.

American Association of University Women, Connecticut Division Records
Archives & Special Collections staff
1993 August
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Archives and Special Collections, University of Connecticut Library Repository

University of Connecticut Library
405 Babbidge Road Unit 1205
Storrs Connecticut 06269-1205 USA US