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Tech Community Women records

 Collection
Identifier: AC-0320

  • Staff Only

Scope and Contents of the Collection

This collection documents the activities of the Tech Community Women, formerly the Technology Dames and the Technology Wives Organization. The bulk of the material centers on the 1920s through the early 1980s. Later records through 1993 are less copious. This collection helps document an area of MIT life that is not as well-known as the more formal academic program. Over a period of fifty years the records reveal the roles of student and faculty wives who worked to promote a supportive social and personal environment for students. The records also show the importance of community groups in providing an opportunity for women to develop and use organizational and leadership skills when few women were employed in the formal workplace. The detailed “pass book” files offer an example of how the organization dealt with the transient nature of the membership. As the membership changed annually with the changing student body, the pass books were created to act as guides and procedure manuals for incoming officers. In addition, elements of popular culture can be noted by studying the types of social events sponsored and charity events supported through the years, from dances in the 1930s to fashion shows and casino nights in the 1950s. Official reports of officers include correspondence, budgets, and planning materials for special events. Yearbooks include lists of committee chairs and members, calendars of events, bylaws of the organization, planning information, and minutes and agendas of meetings. The secretary’s notebooks contain agendas, minutes of meetings, lists of board members, special awards, and mailing lists. There is also a scrapbook that contains photographs, other materials about meetings and events, and clippings from newsletters. Other materials in the collection include newsletters and cookbooks published by the organization.

Dates

  • 1957 - 1993

Creator

Access note

This collection is open.

Intellectual Property Rights

Access to collections in the Department of Distinctive Collections is not authorization to publish. Separate written application for permission to publish must be made to Distinctive Collections. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the creating office.

Historical note

In 1922, the Technology Dames organization was formally established, under the sponsorship of the Technology Matrons (a faculty wives organization), to help the wives of MIT students adjust to and participate in the community. Before 1946, there was no married student housing; married students lived in apartments scattered throughout the area. Many wives faced the challenge of a new environment, sometimes a new culture. The Dames provided an opportunity to socialize and explore cultural and intellectual interests. Their activities focused in large part on programs and projects whose proceeds were donated to charities. The number of graduate students increased beginning in the 1950s, and the organization expanded. In 1972, the Technology Dames changed its name to the Technology Wives Organization, while the Technology Matrons became the MIT Women’s League, open to students, faculty, staff, and their wives. In 1983, the group changed its name again to the Tech Community Women, to reflect that their membership was no longer limited to the wives of students.

Extent

7 Cubic Feet (6 record cartons, 1 large flat box)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

In 1922, the Technology Dames organization was formally established, under the sponsorship of the Technology Matrons (a faculty wives organization), to help the wives of MIT students adjust to and participate in the community. Their activities focused in large part on programs and projects whose proceeds were donated to charities. In 1973, the Technology Dames changed its name to the Technology Wives Organization, while the Technology Matrons became the MIT Women’s League, open to students, faculty, staff, and their wives. The records consist of official reports of officers, which include correspondence, budgets, and planning materials for special events. Yearbooks include lists of committee chairs and members, calendars of events, bylaws of the organization, planning information, and minutes and agendas of meetings. The secretary’s notebooks contain agendas, minutes of meetings, lists of board members, special awards, and mailing lists. There is also a scrapbook that contains photographs, other materials about meetings and events, and clippings from newsletters.

Location

Materials are stored off-site. Advance notice is required for use.

Related Materials

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Women's League Records (AC 381). MIT Department of Distinctive Collections.

Processing Information note

Some collection descriptions are based on legacy data and may be incomplete or contain inaccuracies. Description may change pending verification. Please contact the MIT Department of Distinctive Collections if you notice any errors or discrepancies.
Title
Guide to the Records of the Tech Community Women
Status
Ready For Review
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Contact:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US