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Stella M. Mason papers

Identifier: IWA0744

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Scope and Contents

The papers of Stella M. Mason date from 1852 to 1958 and measure 12.5 linear inches. The collection is arranged in two series: Scrapbooks and Artifacts. The papers document the life, medical practice, and personal interests of Stella M. Mason.

The Scrapbooks series (1852-1950) contains nine scrapbooks, dating from 1852 to 1950. Scrapbooks include newspaper clippings, prints, and commercial art.

The Artifacts series contains medical equipment and supplies, Mason's State of Iowa physician's certificate, correspondence from travels abroad, and a photograph of Stella Mason.


  • Creation: 1852-1958


Conditions Governing Access

The papers are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by the donor has been retained by the donor.

However, copyright status for some collection materials may be unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owner. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility and potential liability based on copyright infringement for any use rests exclusively and solely with the user. Users must properly acknowledge the Iowa Women’s Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, as the source of the material. For further information, visit

Biographical / Historical

Stella M. Mason was born in 1861 near Edgewood, in Delaware County, Iowa. In 1885, she received BS and Master of Accounts degrees from Upper Iowa University in Fayette, Iowa. Mason taught for four years in New Hampton, Iowa, where she began studying medicine under Dr. Amos Babcock. In 1893, she received an MD from Hahnemann Medical College, a homeopathic institution and one of the only medical colleges in Chicago open to women at the time. In 1893, Mason began practicing medicine in Mason City, Iowa, where she was the first female physician and surgeon in the city. She practiced until 1943; when she retired, she was the longest practicing physician and only female physician in Mason City (However, seven other women had practiced intermittently from 1893 to 1943).

Mason belonged to many organizations, including Mason City Business and Professional Women's Club, the local chapter of the American Association of University Women, and Iowa State Medical Society. She was president of the Mason City Woman's Suffrage Association when the Nineteenth Amendment was passed. In 1947, Mason received an honorary degree from Upper Iowa University. Mason died in 1957 in Mason City, Iowa.


12.50 linear inches

Artifacts in boxes 7, 8, and 9; Photographs in Box 1 boxes

Language of Materials



Physician and surgeon who practiced in Mason City, Iowa, and was also active in the women's sufffrage movement.

Method of Acquisition

The papers (donor no. 1137) were donated by Bill Kloss in 2007.

Lindsay E. Shannon, 2008.
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Script of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Iowa Women's Archives Repository

100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242 IaU
319-335-5900 (Fax)