|Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary|
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At a Glance
This collection is arranged in 7 series: 1. Executive Board records, 1920-2002; 2. Annual Assembly, 1922-2002; 3. Regional Chapters, 1989-2001; 4. Membership records, 1945-2001; 5. Photographs, 1972-1999; 6. The Woman's Pulpit, 1922-2003; 7. Audiovisual materials, 1987-1995.
Scope and Contents
This collection contains records kept by the executive board of the IAWM, including correspondence, executive board meeting minutes, a copy of the constitution, and organizational by-laws; records related to the annual gatherings held by the IAWM and its predecessor, American Association of Women Ministers (AAWM), including minutes of the assembly, correspondence, brochures, participant packets, budgetary information and planning material; records of the Pittsburgh Regional Association, including financial records, membership lists, board minutes, newsletters, clippings, and correspondence; records kept by the IAWM secretary concerning the membership of the organization, including membership directories, prayer calendars, and individual and institutional membership records; photographs documenting the activities of the IAWM, including photos from annual assemblies; print, bound and microfilmed versions of The Women's Pulpit; and recordings of sermons given by IAWM members.
Burke Library record group:
Archives of Women in Theological Scholarship (AWTS)
Using the Collection
Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Some material in this collection may be protected by copyright and other rights. Information concerning copyright, fair use, and reproduction requests can be consulted at Columbia's Copyright Advisory Office.
Item description, AWTS: International Association of Women Ministers records, 1920-2003, series #, box #, folder #, The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University in the City of New York.
Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The International Association of Women Ministers donated its records to the Archives of Women in Theological Scholarship in 2000. Material was added to the collection in 2001.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary
When the Burke Library acquired the records of the International Association of Women Ministers, an attempt was made to maintain the original order of the material. olded materials were flattened. Staples, rubber bands, and metal clips were removed and replaced with plastic clips. All materials were placed in acid-free folders and boxes. The finding aid was created by Leslie Reyman in 2001, revised by Elizabeth Russey in 2004, and edited by Leah Edelman in 2022.
2022-05-19 PDF converted to EAD and description updated by Leah Edelman.
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
"I want to get in touch with some women who are preaching, like myself. I know so few, and there must be others." With these words a Kansas woman organized "The American Association of Women Preachers" in 1919. The organization of the now named International Association of Women Preachers took place on November 21, 1919 at the YWCA in St. Louis, Missouri. The founding officers were: Rev. Dr. Madeline Southard, President; Rev. Lida M. Herrick, Recording Secretary; Rev. Ella L. Kroft, Treasurer; and Rev. Mary Sibbitt, Auditor. Southard was a Methodist minister from Kansas. From its founding, the Association has had a four-fold purpose: first, to develop an enabling fellowship among women ministers; second, to promote equal ecclesiastical rights for women; third, to urge women to qualify for increased efficiency in Christian service; and fourth, to encourage consecrated and capable women to take up the work of ministry. Active membership is limited to "Christian women who are officially licensed, ordained, or authorized as clergy; also women who meet the above requirements, but whose denominations do not authorize women to serve as ministers." There are also other strata of membership, including fraternal sustaining, student, retired, and life members. In 1923 William Jennings Bryan became the first fraternal member. Article IV of their constitution states that "the regular meetings of the Association shall be an Assembly held annually or at the call of the executive board." The first assembly was held in Evanston, Illinois in 1920. The Assembly has met every year since its inception. It has met outside the United States five times, including the 2001 Assembly, which met in Aotearoa, New Zealand. In 1930 the Association became an American operation, but forty years later it reclaimed its international identity becoming the International Association of Women Ministers. Over 20% of its current membership resides outside of the United States.