History

AAUW-NYS was formed in 1920. Read a brief history of the NYS activities from 1920 through 2005, or print and use a bookmark form of the document. A history of AAUW-NYS from 1920-1952 was written by Marie Rogers Vail and published by AAUW-NYS in 1954. It is available here.

Lists of our past NYS presidents and the convention sites are also available!

Archive Branch Materials

The projects and accomplishments of AAUW are of interest to many. AAUW has played and continues to play an important role in the women’s movement. It is important to preserve our history to serve as a reference tool and to study past issues that influence present and future ones.

As you create materials and get media coverage for your branch, make sure you keep copies for your branch archives! These can be helpful for continuing best practices as well as for future AAUW members to see all the powerful work your branch has done over the years. On the national AAUW website are several sections outlining the general history of our organization.

Original documents should be preserved for the branch archives and copies given to our successor. Examples of materials to be saved:

  • Minutes of meetings, committees, projects, etc.
  • Financial records
  • Branch programs
  • District and convention programs
  • Materials describing programs, projects, etc. and their implementation
  • Correspondence
  • Branch scrapbook

The decision to retain a record for the branch archives must be judged according to its current, temporary or permanent value to the organization.  If possible, more than one person, hopefully a committee, should make the decisions about what to keep and what not to keep before the information is archived.  Everyone has a slightly different perspective.  The Association has toolkits to assist archival committees.

If your branch does not have a branch archives, now is the time to start the process.  Listed below are some branches that have their archives or some branch information available.  It’s time to add your branch to the list.

Scholars of the women’s movement and those in other fields, such as education, minority rights, sociology, political science, international relations, diversity, and many other fields, find valuable information in the records of the organization at all levels, from the Association to the Branch. Local historians learn more about their communities through studying about AAUW Branches. AAUW-NYS archives are housed in the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections of the Rush Rhees Library at the University of Rochester.