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National Abortion Rights Action League of Iowa records

Identifier: IWA0640

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Scope and Contents

The National Abortion Rights Action League of Iowa records date from 1990 to 2001 and measure 12.25 linear inches. The bulk of the collection consists of albums, administrative notebooks, printed materials, and artifacts.

The Albums (1990-1995) contain photographs, newspaper clippings, event pamphlets and flyers, newsletters, and mailings. Many of the photographs and newspaper clippings are about local rallies and events promoting abortion rights.

The Board of Directors Notebooks (1990-1996) consist of two administrative binders with staff lists and directories, job descriptions, by-laws, mission statements, agendas and meeting minutes, monthly reports, and treasurer's reports.

The Printed Materials (1996-2001) include one local pamphlet, the 1996 Report on Reproductive Services and Education in the State of Iowa. The rest of the publications in this series were produced by the national NARAL organization and NARAL of Oregon. They cover statistics, women's personal stories of abortion, sex education, fake clinics, emergency contraception for rape survivors, reproductive services for women of color, state-by-state reviews, and national campaigns.

The Artifacts (1995-1998) include buttons, stickers, a tote bag, a plaque for "Outstanding Volunteer Run Organization," and a signed photograph of Rob Reiner for a fundraiser auction. The Videocassettes (undated) include Lincoln's Living Legacy, which describes the 1963 March on Washington and its impact on future marches, including the 1992 March for Women's Lives. NARAL Promoting Reproductive Choice includes four commercials titled "I Believe," "Diver," "Bike" and "My Body." The last video, NARAL Tribute to Justice Harry Blackmun describes Blackmun's role in the Roe v. Wade decision with interviews from many people who knew him personally.


  • Creation: 1990-2001


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

The National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws was founded in 1969. NARAL of Iowa was a branch of this national organization that supported Tom Harkin in his 1990 campaign for U.S. senator and started the annual fundraiser Chocolate for Choice. In 1991 the Iowa legislature considered a bill requiring parental notification for teenagers seeking abortions, which NARAL of Iowa helped defeat in 1993. In April of 1992, NARAL of Iowa members participated in the March for Women's Lives rally in Washington, D.C. That year NARAL of Iowa also held a rally at the state capitol in Des Moines protesting the Supreme Court's decision in Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey.

Later activities of NARAL of Iowa included the "Let's Put Women Back into the Picture" campaign, a 21st anniversary celebration of Roe v. Wade, and campaigns against abortion clinic violence. NARAL of Iowa worked closely with local chapters of the National Organization for Women and Planned Parenthood. NARAL changed its name twice after its founding, but kept the same acronym. After the Supreme Court's 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade, the group became the National Abortion Rights Action League, and in 1993, the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League.


12.25 linear inches

3 videocassettes [V350-V352]; Photographs in Box 4. boxes

Language of Materials



Local chapter of the national association.

Method of Acquisition

The papers (donor no. 780) were donated by Susy Robinette in 2001.

Related Materials

Mary C. Neuhauser papers (IWA): The topical files contain items on local abortion laws in the early 1990s, including correspondence and publications from NARAL.

Kate Stewart, 2006.
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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)