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Marion Cox Lichty papers

Identifier: IWA0116

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Scope and Contents

The Marion Cox Lichty papers measure 10 linear inches and date from 1942 to 1989. The papers are divided into five series: Biographical Information, Civilian Life, Women's Army Auxiliary Corps, Women's Army Corps, and United States Air Force Reserve (Women's Air Force). The bulk of the papers document Lichty's military career during World War II and later as a member of the Air Force Reserve. Items of note are the projects completed by Lichty during her tenure at the USAF headquarters and the Strategic Air Command.

Biographical Information contains Lichty's resume (called "Personal Data Sheet") from the period she attended George Washington University (1949-50).

Civilian Life (1943-1963) includes the papers outlining admission requirements for George Washington University and essays written by Lichty while she was a student there. This series also contains a few newspaper clippings about Waterloo, Iowa; photographs of Lichty and friends; and several typed poems.

Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (1942-1943) is made up of memoranda concerning the WAAC Officer Candidate Board, Clothing and Equipment Records, and Army Special Orders.

Women's Army Corps (1942-1946) consists largely of the paperwork from each of Lichty's four wartime assignments. The history of her promotions within the Service is here, as are the results of several physical examinations. A few government publications are present, including an undated WAC directory.

The United States Air Force Reserve (Women's Air Force) (1948-1989) contains the documents which chronicle Lichty's military career from assignment into the Reserve through her retirement. Some of the projects she completed at the USAF headquarters and the Strategic Air Command are here, including a study of WAF clothing, supply, and storage requirements and recruitment of WAC and WAF candidates in Iowa. Numerous official USAF forms and documents are located here, as are several government publications, including one entitled Sex Hygiene for Women Officers and Women Officer Candidates of the Armed Forces (1950).


  • Creation: 1942-1989


Conditions Governing Access

The papers 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

Marion Cox Lichty was born August 28, 1915 in Waterloo, Iowa, to Burr G. and Winnifred Cox Lichty. The couple had another daughter, Jean Lichty, born in 1918. Marion attended elementary and secondary school in Waterloo, studied liberal arts and received an Associate of Arts degree from Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri in 1935, and obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in business administration from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. in 1950. She held a number of civilian jobs over time, but was consistently associated at varying levels with the Smith, Lichty, and Hillman Company in Waterloo, a beverage distributor which later dealt in real estate management. Her father was a president of the company.

Lichty enlisted in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) on July 9, 1942, at Fort Des Moines, Iowa. She was selected as a member of the first WAAC Officer Candidate Class and received her commission as Third Officer on August 29, 1942. By 1951 she had been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel. Her career with the Women's Army Corps (as WAAC became known after 1943) lasted until 1946, during which time she served in a number of positions that dealt with personnel, training, and recruitment. She was given duty assignments to serve at the Fifth Service Command at Fort Hayes, Ohio during 1942 and 1943; at the Air Service Command at Paterson Field, Ohio in 1943 and 1944; at Wright Field at Dayton, Ohio during 1944 and 1945; and at the headquarters of the Selective Service System in Washington, D.C. from 1945 to 1946.

Upon the illness and subsequent death of her father in 1946, Lichty took leave from the military, in order to settle his estate and deal with business affairs. After working as a program director for a radio station in San Rafael, California in 1948 and 1949, Lichty applied for commission in the United States Air Force Reserve (Women's Air Force) and received that appointment on November 18, 1948.

From 1950 to 1954 she was stationed at the U.S. Air Force (USAF) headquarters in Washington, D.C. During this assignment, she completed a number of projects that focused on USAF personnel issues. Her duties were transferred to the Strategic Air Command (SAC) in Omaha, Nebraska in 1955, where she performed her military duties but maintained her residence in Waterloo. Here she worked on such projects as the development of youth programs at SAC and a televised nationwide recruiting program. Her association with SAC lasted until 1965, at which time she retired from duty in the USAF Reserve and became a member of the Retired Reserve. That membership lasted until 1975, when she retired from the military altogether.


10.00 linear inches

Photographs in box 1. boxes

Language of Materials



Waterloo, Iowa native who served in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps during World War II and then in the United States Air Force Reserve.

Method of Acquisition

The papers (donor no. 180) were donated by Marion Cox Lichty in 1993.

Stuart Hinds, 1993.
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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)