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MC 221

Mothers' Thursday Club (Cambridge, Mass.). Records of the Mothers' Thursday Club, 1920-2011: A Finding Aid

Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University


Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Processing of this collection was made possible by a gift from the Mothers' Thursday Club.

Descriptive Summary

Location: Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.
Call No.: MC 221
Repository: Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Creator: Mothers' Thursday Club (Cambridge, Mass.)
Title: Records of the Mothers' Thursday Club, 1920-2011
Date(s): 1920-2011
Quantity: 1.88 linear feet (4+1/2 file boxes)
Language of materials: Materials in English.
Abstract: Constitutions, minutes, membership lists, correspondence, etc., of the Mothers' Thursday Club of Cambridge (Mass.), established to promote discussion and socializing among its members.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

Accession numbers: 1549, 76-M383, 79-M45, 92-M94, 93-M94, 97-M12, 2000-M41, 2001-M213, 2005-M63, 2009-M92, 2009-M223, 2010-M111, 2011-M81
The records of the Mothers' Thursday Club were given to the Schlesinger Library between March 1969 and May 2011 by the Mothers' Thursday Club (via Mrs. Dwight Harken, Mrs. Charles Almy, and other members).

Processing Information:

Processed: April 1976; updated May 2011
By: Louise Meier; updated by Anne Engelhart

Access Restrictions:

Access. Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use:

Copyright. Copyright in the records created by the Mothers' Thursday Club is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.
Copying. Records may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.

Preferred Citation:

Mothers' Thursday Club Records, 1920-2011; item description, dates. MC 221, folder #. Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University.


The Mothers' Query Club (as it was first called), of Cambridge, Massachusetts, was organized in the winter of 1919-1920; 40 members attended its first meeting on January 29, 1920. One year later, in January 1921, the name was changed to the Mothers' Thursday Club. Its purpose was "to promote discussion of subjects of interest to mothers, and to secure a better acquaintance among its members." This organization, limited to 60 women, continues to meet once a month to enjoy social events, lectures, and discussions on topics of current interest. Many lectures have been given by members of the Harvard faculty; among the earliest were Basil King, speaking at the very first meeting on "The Edge of the Unseen"; Floyd Henry Allport, speaking on "The Psychology of Child Development"; and Dr. Martin Edwards on "The Importance of Proper Nutrition, Posture and Exercise." In the fall of 1920 the Club discussed the upcoming election (the first with women enfranchised nationally), with the members' support divided among Warren G. Harding, James M.Cox, and Eugene Debs. The Club's charter members and first officers were Mrs. I.L. Winter, President; Mrs. Stoughton Bell, Treasurer; Mrs. Herbert Weir Symth, Secretary.


These records include minutes, proceedings, programs, membership lists, memorial minutes, correspondence, photographs, etc., from the Club's inception in January 1920 to 2011. In May 2011, additional records were added to the original finding aid: this new material is found in #PD.2-PD.3, 1.1-1.3, 2.1-2.5, 3.1-3.13, 4.1-4.2, 4.5-16, 5.1-5.4.

Container List

Additional Index Terms

Cambridge (Mass.)--Social life and customs--20th century
Mothers--United States
Women--Societies and clubs