Campaign to Add Women to the Iowa Constitution records
The Campaign to Add Women to the Iowa Constitution records date from 1978 to 1998 and measure 5 linear inches. They consist largely of administrative records including lists of supporters, meeting minutes, financial information, and communication with the Sumo Group which was hired to provide services. There are also local chapter contact lists, some newspaper clippings, resumes of steering committee members, and a few buttons. One folder includes materials from earlier ERA efforts.
- Campaign to Add Women to the Iowa Constitution (Organization)
Conditions Governing Access
The records are open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Copyright held by the donor has been transferred to The University of Iowa.
5.00 linear inches
Artifacts in Box 1. other_unmapped
Organization formed to work for passage of Iowa state ERA.
Biographical / Historical
In late 1997, after the Iowa state ERA had failed twice (1980 and 1992), the League of Women´s Voters of Iowa initiated a new effort to protect the legal rights of the women of Iowa. The LWV convened a meeting, and a statewide committee named "ERA....Iowa Style" was formed. The group´s name was soon changed to Campaign to Add Women to the Iowa Constitution, however, to emphasize the difference between the ERA and the amendment this group was proposing. The ERA had included an enacting clause which required the state to eliminate gender discrimination. The "add women" amendment, in contrast, had no such clause. Its purpose was to clearly express Iowa´s commitment to the principle of gender equality. The proposed amendment to Article I, Section 1 of the Iowa Constitution, which is a statement of fundamental beliefs, added only two words: "All men and women are, by nature, free and equal, and have certain inalienable rights..." As required by Iowa law, this amendment was passed by two consecutive sessions of the Iowa General Assembly (the 76 th in 1995 and the 77 th in 1997) before appearing on the ballot. The amendment to "add women" had strong bi-partisan support and generated little controversy, although some former ERA supporters derided it as a weak, symbolic gesture. The amendment was approved by a large majority in the general election on November 3, 1998. The group disbanded immediately after the election.
Method of Acquisition
The records were donated by Suzanne Schenken (donor no. 147) in 1998, by Karen Thomsen (donor no. 802) in 2001, and by Loren Shultz (donor no. 841) in 2002.
Other Descriptive Information
- Administrative records
- Archives (groupings)
- Campaign to Add Women to the Iowa Constitution
- Cultural artifacts
- Equal rights amendments
- League of Women Voters of Iowa
- Political campaigns
- Women -- Political activity
- Women's rights
- Women, Politics and the Law
- Jamie Nelson, 2000. Revised by Sharon M. Lake in 2005.
- Language of description