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League of Women Voters (Bowling Green, Ohio) - MS 139

Introduction | Agency History | Scope and Contents | Series Description | Inventory


The records of the League of Women Voters of Bowling Green date from 1952 to 2005. The history of the social and political organization is reflected in this collection which consists of ten linear feet of meeting minutes, annual reports, financial records, correspondence, literary productions, printed materials, and news clippings.

The records of the League of Women Voters were donated to the Center for Archival Collections in July 1980, through the cooperation of Sally York, past President of the League, and Ann Bowers, Curator of Manuscripts at the CAC. Additions to the collection have been made periodically since that time. Literary and property rights have been dedicated to the public and duplication is permitted for the purposes of preservation and scholarly research. The register was prepared by Karen Snow, graduate assistant, History Department, Bowling Green State University, in March 1982. Additions were fully incorporated and the register revised by Lee N. McLaird, Curator of Rare Books and Special Collections in October 2006.  Additions to the collection are made periodically.

 Agency History

The League of Women Voters of Bowling Green is a part of the League of Women Voters of the United States and has as its purpose "to promote political responsibility through informed and active participation of citizens in government." The national League was established in 1920, the year that woman suffrage was incorporated into the Constitution of the United States. The organization originally was part of the National American Woman Suffrage Association, the group which led the 72 year drive for women's voting rights. The League was founded primarily to help the 20 million newly-enfranchised women carry out their new responsibilities.

The League is nonpartisan, in that it neither supports nor opposes candidates or political parties, although it does advocate on particular issues. The organization also encourages its members to work as individuals in the political party of their choice. The League is open to all citizens of voting age who believe in representative government. Others who are not of voting age or not citizens can be associate members. Men have been eligible to join as full members since 1974. Members work through their local league on local, state, and national governmental issues. Board members at all three levels are elected to carry out decisions made by members in local meetings, state conventions, and biennial national conventions.

The League of Women Voters is a non-profit volunteer organization. The local Leagues adopt budgets which include voluntary pledges for support of state and national work. Members of local leagues are automatically members of the state and national organizations, through a per-member assessment. About a third of the organization's income comes from dues assessed by local Leagues and two-thirds from contributions made by members and other civic-minded individuals.

The Bowling Green chapter of the League was formed in 1952. Its stated purpose is to promote political responsibility through informed and active participation of citizens in government, to increase understanding of major public policy issues and to influence public policy through education and advocacy. Current information about the League's activities and links to the national and state organizations can be found at their website:

 Scope and Content

The records of the Bowling Green League of Women Voters date from 1953 to 2005 and document the history of a non-partisan political organization and its members. Consisting primarily of meeting minutes, correspondence, financial records, subject files, and printed material, this collection provides several avenues of research.

Taken as a whole, the records of the League provide an excellent view of the organization's functioning within the Bowling Green community. The board, annual, and membership meeting minutes, printed material, and literary productions document the activities of the League such as charity projects, community development programs, and voter services. These records also show how the League of Women Voters has worked in cooperation with other area organizations through the years.

By far the most complete source for information on the League is the board meeting minutes, dating from 1952 to 2005 (although the records for some years are scattered). Committee reports included in the minutes are useful in studying the social and political issues of concern to League members. Newspaper clippings from the Bowling Green Sentinel-Tribune (1966-1990s) also offer a running commentary of the League's activities. Articles contained in the clippings include information on projects involving the League, letters to the editor concerning political and social issues, and an occasional column entitled "League Outlook" in which controversial issues are discussed. A final source for this type of information is the local newsletter (the name changed from Bulletin to Voter in 1967), dating from 1956 to 2005. It contains a combination of the information found in the minutes and newspaper clippings. Examples of the many issues studied include: land use (embracing environmental quality as well as community planning), services for the aged and poor, the energy crisis, the Equal Rights Amendment, quality of education, housing, and employment, international relations, and elections and the democratic process.

Specifically, in the political sphere, these records are rich in detail, especially on the local level. Through a special section in the Sentinel-Tribune, "Bowling Green Voter's Digest," or Voter's Guide, the League informs the public on the candidates and ballot issues to be considered in elections. The League solicits from each candidate information including political party, past experience, and opinions on important issues of the time. Background and explanation of ballot issues is also summarized. A shortcoming of this source, however, is that it is by no means a complete set of this publication. Additional news clippings supplement the voter's guide and provide background about other League activities.

Related to these clippings is the work of the Voter Services Committee, which coordinates candidate forums and gathers the information for the newspaper guide. When the voting age was lowered to eighteen, the League sponsored an information program geared to new voters, especially those of high school age, of their voting rights and responsibilities. Documents for this activity consist of speaking notes, visual aids, and supporting data from approximately 1972 to 1979, although there are some later items as well.

Work of other committees is documented through subject files and committee information gathered in preparation for the League's public programs, and as part of the "Observer Corps" activity, in which members attend and report on the public meetings of local government agencies. These items document the changes over time in the Bowling Green community and the services it expected of its government, as well as the community's evolving attitudes on issues from education to land use.

Summaries of the yearly expenditures and income for the League can be found in the annual report to State and National League of Women Voters (1954-2000, scattered dates). The financial records include summaries of the financial transactions conducted by the League, as well as the names of contributors to the League along with the amount contributed. These records include the League's first ledger beginning in 1952, information on the annual Finance Drive (1958-2005), Budget Committee reports (1952-2005, showing planning for the coming year), and the Treasurer's monthly reports (1967-2005). Information is also included on special memorial funds established to honor individual members.

A highlight of the printed materials series are the informational publications produced by the Bowling Green League about local schools, city and county government, and guides to public officials and ballot issues. Additional publications by other local leagues as well as representative publications from the state and national organizations are included.

The photograph series highlights activities of the Bowling Green League since the mid-1970s, especially annual meetings, special fundraisers (a rummage sale and the AIDS memorial quilt exhibition, for instance), and the 30th and 50th Anniversary celebrations. Proclamations, plaques, and other artifact material complete the collection.

 Series Description


1946, 1976, 1986
Arranged chronologically
Contains national organization purpose and policy, membership rules, and policies regarding boards, officers, finances, meetings, and governance.

1981-1995 (scattered)
Arranged chronologically
Contains state organization purpose and policy, membership rules, and policies regarding boards, officers, finances, meetings, and governance.

1957-2001 (scattered dates)
Arranged chronologically
Contains name of the League, purpose and policy, membership rules, and policies regarding board of directors, officers, financial administration, meetings, nomination and election of officers, program, and conventions, as well as amendments proposed.

Arranged chronologically
Contains secretary's minute books including annual, membership, general, and board meetings. Includes time and place of meeting, members in attendance, committee reports, officers, motions and agreements.

April 1957-April 2005
Arranged chronologically
Includes time and place of meeting, number in attendance, committee reports, slate of new officers and delegates to state convention, and motions and agreements.

May 1956-September 1960; 1970-1976; 1978
Arranged chronologically
Contains time and place of meeting, details of the reports given, and total attendance; programs, information about the League, speaking notes on committee projects and duties, principles of the League, and local board policies. Some meetings may be documented in annual meeting minutes or in monthly board minutes.

Arranged chronologically
Contains a record of names of members present and absent, time and place of meeting, minutes of the previous meeting, officer and committee reports, motions, agreements, and plans for the next meeting and for public programs.

1960s-2000s (scattered dates)
Arranged chronologically
Includes policies established by the board to cover procedures, reaching consensus, and other activities to guide local league activities, as well as position statements of the local League on issues of local interest.

1952-2000 (scattered dates)
Arranged by member grouping (officer, complete membership), then chronologically Includes lists of board officers and members and contact information.


1952-2000 (scattered)
Arranged chronologically
Includes invitations to functions of other local Leagues, thank yous, information on local projects, requests for information, letters from committee members and officers, as well as memos from presidents to committee members, letters regarding election issues, and information regarding League support of local projects.


Arranged alphabetically by topic
May include committee reports as well as printed material, publications, and notes gathered by committee members in the course of their research and study of issues of concern to the League, contact with elected officials, and other League activity.


Arranged chronologically
Reports to national organization on the first year of local activity, including information about number of members and activities.

1954-2000s (scattered dates)
Arranged chronologically
May include reports to the local membership as well as reports to state and national organizations. Contains information on membership, Board procedures, information from membership and unit meetings, committee and project reports, changes in the bylaws, local board recommendations, financial reports, programs, voter service information, and data on public relations and publications.

Arranged by committee, then chronologically
Includes reports of the Observer Corps on local government agencies, the Golden Anniversary Committee, and the Charter Review Committee


1972-2002 (scattered)
No arrangement
Includes notes, speeches, and other writing about the founding and development of the Bowling Green chapter, usually written for anniversary commemorations.

No arrangement
Includes notebooks of League presidents on activities during their term.

No arrangement
Includes newspaper and personal obituaries of League members

1964, 2002
Arranged by subject
Includes a history, with notes on the formation and early years of the League as well as a history of the city of Bowling Green

Arranged by type of material
Includes speeches, notes, supporting material, and voters guide questionnaires prepared by members of the Voter Services Committee in the course of its work.


1958-1959, 1961-1966, 1968-1972, 1975-1976
Arranged chronologically
Contains reports and summaries of finance drives, finance questionnaires, reports of total income, report to Board of the League, and listings of names of contributors and the amount contributed.

1958-1990s, n.d.
Arranged chronologically
Includes correspondence, reports, flyers, plans, and publications relating to money raising in general, as well as specific information dealing with the activities of the Bowling Green League.

Scattered dates
Includes report of the Audit Committee verifying League financial records.

Arranged chronologically
Contains names of the members of the budget committee, total expenditures of the League (administration, publications, activities, public services), total income of the League (dues, contributions, publication sales), balances, and projections for the coming year.

Arranged chronologically
Contains income and expenditures for each reporting period, running balances, and status of all bank accounts for operating expenses and education fund activities.

Copies of forms filed with tax statements

Includes correspondence, balances, expenses of this memorial fund.


Arranged chronologically
Consists of the section of the Bowling Green Sentinel-Tribune entitled, "Bowling Green Voter's Digest," or Voter's Guide which discusses all candidates up for each election (disclosing their party, past experience, and stand on the issues).

1954, 2002
Arranged chronologically
Consists of scrapbooks prepared by individual members regarding the first year of League activity and the 50th Anniversary celebration.

Arranged chronologically
Includes press releases and newspaper clippings regarding events sponsored by League or information distributed by League. May also include television and radio scripts and public service announcements

1952-2000s, n.d. (scattered)
Arranged chronologically
Contains clippings related to the League's involvement in community projects, election issues, letters to the editor, and other League activities as well as a special column called "League Lookout."


1956, 1958-2005 (some dates scattered)
Arranged chronologically
A newsletter sent to League members containing brief mention of future meetings, new members, proposed and adopted amendments to the bylaws, committee news, proposed programs, and other miscellaneous information. Contains monthly calendar of events, notices, membership data, committee reports, bylaw changes, election issues, and special article series on subjects such as ecology and Congressional studies.

Arranged by publication
Publications produced by LWV-BG to inform voters about government and elected officials, including information on city and county governments, the Bowling Green school district, guides to public officials, and fundraising.

Arranged by organization
Includes publications by other local leagues on local government and public issues, state league on state government and league activities, and national publications to assist local leagues. Some bumper stickers included.

1975, 1989, 2006
Consists of a publication of guidelines for local boards covering all facets of League operations.

Scattered dates
Includes copies of awards present by and to League.

Scattered dates
Arranged chronologically
List of program dates and topics for each year.

1972, 2002
Arranged chronologically
Includes programs for the 20th and 50th anniversary celebration meetings.

Scattered dates
No arrangement
Includes promotional flyers and programs for events sponsored by League.


Includes photograph of officers, fundraising events such as a community rummage sale and the AIDS Quilt Exhibition, as well as annual meetings, state conventions, and the 50th Anniversary celebration.


2000s – present
Includes compact disks and DVDs with files, gathered by LWVBG Presidents and those provided to LWVBG for programming and other information.


Includes plaques and proclamations


Box 1: Proceedings

  1. Bylaws, LWV-US and proposed changes, 1946, 1976, 1986
  2. Bylaws, LWV-Ohio, 1981, 1983, 1985, 1993, 1995
  3. Bylaws, LWV-BG, 1950s, 1956, 1966
  4. Bylaws, LWV-BG, 1972-2001
  5. Bylaws, LWV-BG. Amendments proposed, 1950s-1990s
  6. Minutes, Secretary's Book, 1952-1953
  7. Minutes, Secretary's Book, 1953-1954
  8. Minutes, Secretary's Book, 1954-1955
  9. Annual meeting minutes/agenda, 1957-1969
  10. Annual meeting minutes/agenda, 1970-1979
  11. Annual meeting minutes/agenda, 1980-1989
  12. Annual meeting minutes/agenda, 1990-1999
  13. Annual meeting minutes/agenda, 2000-
  14. General meeting minutes, 1956-1960
  15. General membership meeting, 1971-1976, 1978

Box 2: Proceedings

  1. Board meeting minutes, 1956-1959
  2. Board meeting minutes, 1960-1961
  3. Board meeting minutes, 1962-1963
  4. Board meeting minutes, 1964-1965
  5. Board meeting minutes, 1966-1967
  6. Board meeting minutes, 1968-1969
  7. Board meeting minutes, 1970-1971
  8. Board meeting minutes, 1972-1973
  9. Board meeting minutes, 1974-1975
  10. Board meeting minutes, 1976-1977
  11. Board meeting minutes, 1978-1979
  12. Board meeting minutes, 1980-1981
  13. Board meeting minutes, 1982-1983
  14. Board meeting minutes, 1984-1985
  15. Board meeting minutes, 1986-1987
  16. Board meeting minutes, 1988-1989

Box 3: Proceedings


  1. Board meeting minutes, 1990-1991
  2. Board meeting minutes, 1992-1993
  3. Board meeting minutes, 1994-1995
  4. Board meeting minutes, 1996-1997 (scattered)
  5. Board meeting minutes, 1998-1999
  6. Board meeting minutes, 2000-2001
  7. Board meeting minutes, 2002-2003
  8. Board meeting minutes, 2004-2005
  9. Board meeting minutes, 2006-2007
  10. Board meeting minutes, 2008-2009
  11. Board meeting minutes, 2010-2011
  12. Board meeting minutes, 2012-
  13. Board policies and position statements, 2002, n.d.
  14. Charter members, ca. 1952
  15. Officers list, 1952-1997, 2000, n.d.
  16. General membership lists, 1950s
  17. General membership lists, 1960s
  18. General membership lists, 1970s
  19. General membership lists, 1980s
  20. General membership lists, 1990s
  21. General membership lists, 2000s

Box 4: Correspondence


  1. Correspondence, 1950s
  2. Correspondence, 1960s
  3. Correspondence, 1970s
  4. Correspondence, 1980s
  5. Correspondence, 1990s
  6. Correspondence, 2000s

Box 5: Subject Files


  1. Aging-committee memos, reports, correspondence, 1985-1986
  2. Aging-supporting information, 1983-1987
  3. Board Training, n.d.
  4. Bowling Green City Charter, 1960s-1970s
  5. Bowling Green City Charter-clippings, 1960s-1970s
  6. Campaign Finance, 1973-1976
  7. Education, 1960s
  8. Education, 1970s
  9. Education, 1980s
  10. Education, 1990s
  11. Education, 2000s
  12. Education-publications, 1960s-2000s, n.d.
  13. Education-clippings, n.d.
  14. Election systems, scattered dates
  15. Environmental quality, scattered dates
  16. Food Forum, n.d.
  17. Health, 1960s-1970s
  18. Health, 1980s-2000s
  19. Health-publications, n.d.
  20. Health-clippings, scattered dates
  21. International relations, 1980s
  22. International relations-publications, clippings, 1980s-
  23. Juvenile Justice, n.d.
  24. Juvenile Justice-clippings, 1970s-1980s
  25. Land Use, 1970s-1980s
  26. Land Use, 1990s-2000s, n.d.
  27. League of Women Voters-Ohio, scattered dates
  28. Legislator contact, scattered dates
  29. Library, scattered dates
  30. Local programs, scattered dates
  31. Meet Your Government, scattered dates
  32. Membership Breakfast planning, scattered dates
  33. Membership interests (survey), 1980s
  34. Mental Health
  35. Natural Resources, scattered dates
  36. Other Leagues, 1980s
  37. Parks, 1970s-1980s
  38. Planning and Zoning, n.d.
  39. Public Utilities, 1970s
  40. Redistricting, 2012
  41. Reproductive Choice, 1970s
  42. Solid Waste, 1970s-1980s
  43. State Government Finance, 1970s-1980s
  44. Tax Reform, 1980s
  45. TMACOG-Citizen Advisory committee, 1980s
  46. Voter Services-Registration, scattered dates
  47. Voter Services-Candidate Night, 1970s-2000s
  48. Voter Services-Voter Guide questionnaires, 1980s
  49. Water, 1970s-1980s
  50. Water-LWV-Ohio, 1980s
  51. Water-Correspondence, 1980s
  52. Water-Water quality reports, 1980-1985
  53. Water-printed material, 1980s
  54. Water-Lake Erie Letter, 1971-1982
  55. Water-clippings, 1970s-1980s
  56. WSOS, 1980s
  57. Glossary and aids, n.d.

Box 6: Reports


  1. Quarterly Report of Provisional League, 1952
  2. Annual Report, 1954-1959
  3. Annual Report, 1960-1965
  4. Annual Report, 1966-1969
  5. Annual Report, 1970-1979
  6. Annual Report, 1980-2000s (scattered)
  7. Observer Corps Report (general information), 1977-1990
  8. Observer Corps Report, City Council, 1977-1980
  9. Observer Corps Report, City Council, 1981-1982
  10. Observer Corps Report, City Council, 1983-1984
  11. Observer Corps Report, clippings, 1981-1984
  12. Observer Corps Report, Board of Education, 1967-1973
  13. Observer Corps Report, Planning Commission, 1980s
  14. Observer Corps Report, Board of Zoning Appeals, 1981-1982
  15. Observer Corps Report, Wood County 648 Board, 1970s-1980s
  16. Observer Corps Report, Wood County Board of Health, 1970s
  17. Observer Corps Report, Wood County Board of Health, 1980s
  18. Observer Corps Report, Board of Public Utilities, 1977-1982
  19. Anniversary Committee Report, 2002
  20. Anniversary Committee records, 2012
  21. Charter Review Committee Report, 2001
  22. Other Reports, 2000s

Box 7: Literary Productions


  1. Memoirs by members, scattered dates
  2. President's Journal, 1980s
  3. Obituaries, scattered dates
  4. History of LWV-BG, notes, n.d.
  5. History of Bowling Green, notes, n.d.
  6. Speeches, 1980s
  7. Voter Services Committee. Speeches, 1972-1979
  8. Voter Services Committee. Speech notes, 1972-1979
  9. Voter Services Committee. Speech diagrams, 1970s
  10. Voter Services Committee. Questionnaires, 1970s

Box 8: Finance

  1. Finance Chair's report, 195-1976 (scattered dates)
  2. Finance Drive materials, 1958-1963
  3. Finance Drive materials, 1964-1965
  4. Finance Drive materials, 1966-1968, 1969-1974, n.d.
  5. Finance Drive materials (prospectus), 1966-1985
  6. Finance Drive materials, 1970s
  7. Finance Drive materials, 1980s
  8. Finance Drive materials, 1990s
  9. Audits, 1990s, n.d.
  10. Budget Committee, 1950-1969
  11. Budget Committee, 1970-1989
  12. Budget Committee, 1990s
  13. Budget Committee, 2000s
  14. Annual Finance Reports, 1969-2000 (scattered)
  15. Local League Reports to state and national, 1970-2000
  16. Finance. Ledger, 1950s
  17. Treasurer's Monthly Report, 1967-1970
  18. Treasurer's Monthly Report, 1970-1980
  19. Treasurer's Monthly Report, 1980-1990
  20. Treasurer's Monthly Report, 1990-2000
  21. Treasurer's Monthly Report, 2000-
  22. IRS forms, scattered dates
  23. Rosie Haas Memorial Fund, 1980s
  24. Guide for Treasurers: "How to Keep Books", n.d.

Box 9: Scrapbooks and Clippings, Publications


  1. Voter's Guide, 1950s
  2. Voter's Guide, 1960s
  3. Voter's Guide, 1970s
  4. Voter's Guide, 1980s
  5. Voter's Guide, 1990s-2000s
  6. Scrapbook, 1954
  7. Scrapbook, ca. 2002
  8. Press releases (national), 1980s
  9. Press releases, local, 1960s
  10. Press releases, local, 1970s
  11. Press releases, local, 1980s
  12. Press releases, local, 1990s-2000s
  13. Television and radio scripts, PSAs, 1970-1985
  14. Clippings, 1950s
  15. Clippings, 1960s
  16. Clippings, 1960s
  17. Clippings, 1970s
  18. Clippings, 1980s
  19. Clippings, 1990s-2000s
  20. Bulletin, 1956; 1958-1960
  21. Bulletin, 1961-1963
  22. Bulletin, 1964-1966
  23. Bulletin/Voter, 1967-1968
  24. Voter, 1969-1970

Box 10: Publications


  1. Voter, 1971-1972
  2. Voter, 1973-Nov 1974
  3. Voter, 1975
  4. Voter, 1976
  5. Voter, 1977
  6. Voter, 1978-1979
  7. Voter, 1981-1983
  8. Voter, 1984-1986
  9. Voter, 1987-1989
  10. Voter, 1990-1992
  11. Voter, 1993-1995
  12. Voter, 1996-1999
  13. Voter, 2000+
  14. LWV-BG. Guide to Public Officials, 1997-2004, n.d.
  15. LWV-BG. Facts for Voters, 1972-1988
  16. LWV-BG. Fundraising brochure, scattered dates
  17. LWV-BG. New member book, 1970s-1980s
  18. LWV-BG. Your City Government, 1953
  19. LWV-BG. This is Bowling Green, 1960
  20. LWV-BG. Know Your BG Schools, 1963
  21. LWV-BG. You and Your County Government, 1965
  22. LWV-BG. Website, ca. 2001
  23. Publications by other leagues, 1980s-2000s
  24. LWV-Ohio. In League, 1975, 1989, 2000s
  25. LWV-Ohio. State Workbooks 2001+

Box 11: Publications, Photographs

  1. LWV-Ohio. Agenda for Action, 1983-85, 1985-87
  2. LWV-Ohio. Know Your Ohio Government, 1964
  3. LWV-Ohio. Miscellaneous publications, 1978+
  4. LWV-US. Miscellaneous publications, scattered dates
  5. LWV-US. Diversity
  6. LWV-US. Health Care
  7. LWV-US. Judiciary
  8. LWV-US. imPACT materials
  9. LWV-US. President’s aids
  10. LWV-US. Sunshine laws
  11. LWV-US. Voters Service
  12. LWV-US. Bumper stickers, n.d., pin
  13. Postage Stamps/First Day covers (Lucy Stone, Elizabeth Cady Stanton)
  14. Awards, certificates, 1970s-2000s
  15. 20th Anniversary Program, 1972
  16. 50th Anniversary Program, 2002
  17. Calendars, 1980s
  18. Event Flyers and Programs, scattered dates
  19. Photographs, 1970s
  20. Photographs. Candidate Forum, 1981
  21. Photographs. Includes AIDS Quilt, 1980s
  22. Photographs. Includes LWV-Ohio Convention (Toledo), 1990s
  23. Photographs and albums of 50th Anniversary, 2002
  24. Photographs, 2000+
  25. Photographs and negatives (no identification), n.d.
  26. Computer media. Roger Anderson files, 2009-2011, 2 copies DVD
  27. Computer media. DC Voting Rights program (2 DVDs)
    Coalition for Ohio’s Future (2006), 1 DVD
    LWV-US Resource Disk, 46th National convention (1 CD)
    imPACT “Toolbox” (2006) (1 CD)

Box 12: Artifacts

  1. Proclamation, 2002
  2. Award plaque. BGEA Friend of Education Award, n.d.
  3. Plaque. Outstanding Award for Action, 1997
  4. Photographs (35mm slides), n.d.
  5. Buttons and stickers, 2002, n.d.



  1. Signs for 50th Anniversary, 2002

Manuscripts by Subject | Political CollectionsWomen's Studies