Skip to main content

Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (Des Moines Chapter) records

Identifier: IWA0240

  • Staff Only
  • Please navigate to collection organization to place requests.

Scope and Contents

The Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Des Moines branch records date from 1962 to 2008 and measure 12.8 linear inches. The records are arranged in The records are arranged in five series: Administrative, Projects, Publicity, Other WILPF groups, and Member.

The Administrative series includes a bound volume of political articles and correspondence compiled in memory of Martha Hock and clippings of members participating in activism work and biographies of league members, including: Asalee Stanfield, Kathryn Wisdom, Martha Hock, Gwen Peterson, Mary Lou Smith, Alice Jones, Penny Felsen, Edna Griffin, and Phyllis Paine.

The Members’ Files series includes research materials donated by specific members of the organization. These materials cover a variety of topics. For example, Maggie Rawland’s papers include clippings, correspondence, reports, and articles. In Rawland’s files are materials about herbicide use in the Midwest, information about supporting Anita Hill, and a booklet of hearings from at the 1970 Subcommittee on Energy, Natural Resources, and the Environment of the Committee on Commerce session. This series also includes information gathered by members Willa Tharp on racism and poverty, and Jane Magers, an activist for peace and the environment. Photographs of peace demonstrations and WILPF meetings are included in the Jane Magers folder.


  • Creation: 1962-2008


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.

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

The Des Moines branch of the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) was officially formed April 18, 1962. Men were admitted from the beginning. Concerned about war and nuclear testing, the Des Moines members studied government policy on nuclear testing and fallout, the war in Vietnam, the universal draft, the national defense budget, and the arms race. Taking its cue from the original WILPF founded in 1915 by Jane Addams, the group stressed active participation in the form of letter writing, informational rallies, study groups and demonstrations. Eventually its concerns expanded to issues regarding the population explosion, apartheid in South Africa, United States-Cuba relations, and civil liberties.


12.80 linear inches

Language of Materials



Members of the Des Moines chapter of WILPF studied government policy on nuclear testing, the draft , the war in Vietnam, and the arms race.  They held informational rallies and demonstrations and maintained a vigorous letter-writing campaign.

Method of Acquisition

The records (donor no. 333) were donated by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom (Des Moines Branch) in 1996 and by Jane Magers (donor no. 873).

Related Materials

Edna Griffin papers (IWA)

Margaret Richardson (1996); Lindsay E. Shannon (2009 addition); Katie Gandhi (2016 addition)
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

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)