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Pauline Lyon papers

Identifier: IWA0202

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Scope and Contents

The Pauline Lyon papers date from 1884 to 1994 and measure 12 linear inches. The papers are arranged in three series: Personal, American Red Cross, and Military.

The Personal series (1884, 1909, 1922-1994 and undated) consists of Lyon's birth announcement, school records, biographical writings, family information, personal correspondence and Christmas letters, and skits and speeches she wrote. Also contained in this series are scrapbooks and photo albums from her youth, a record of her wedding, and many family photographs. The 1884 document is Lyon's father's birth certificate, and the 1909 document is her mother's graduation announcement.

The American Red Cross series (1959-1988 and undated) contains materials from Lyon's American Red Cross experiences.There is general Red Cross information, a listing of her job responsibilities, honors and certifications, newsletters she created and contributed to, and buttons promoting Red Cross blood donation. Correspondence created in her position as director of donor resources is also included.

The Military series (1943-1995 and undated) consists of Lyon's memorabilia about the Navy in World War II and the WAVES inparticular. There are pages of scrapbooks, newsletters, correspondence about naval and WAVES matters, photographs, and recruiting posters. Lyon also taped her memories of her World War II experiences on audiocassette; the tape is included here, as is a videocassette on the history of and war experience at the Ottumwa Naval Air Base.


  • Creation: 1884-1994


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

Pauline Dryden Lyon was born on November 18, 1922 in Waterloo, Iowa, to Clifford and Grace Dryden. After graduating from high school in 1941, Dryden decided that she needed to make a contribution to the war effort and joined the WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service) in 1943. She began her naval training in New York City and completed her education in Cedar Falls, Iowa. She served as a WAVES Yeoman second class in charge of advancement in rating of enlisted personnel at the Ottumwa Naval Air Station in Ottumwa, Iowa, from 1943 to 1946.

Much of the rest of Lyon's career was spent in the service of the Black Hawk county chapter of the American Red Cross. She served both in volunteer and professional capacities. Several of the positions she held were assistant director of the Black Hawk county chapter, director of Service to Military Families, Volunteers, and Youth, which she held from 1971 to 1977, and director of donor resources and development, which she held from 1977 until her retirement in 1984.


12.00 linear inches

2 audiocassettes [AC325 and AC326], 1 videocassette [V90], Photographs in boxes 1-2 boxes

Language of Materials



Waterloo, Iowa, native who served in WAVES during World War II and later worked for the American Red Cross.

Method of Acquisition

The papers (donor no. 283) were donated by Pauline Lyon in 1995.

Related Materials

Muriel Anne Dryden papers (IWA): Muriel Dryden is Pauline Lyon's sister.

Kristen Rassbach, 1996.
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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)