In Her Own Right

Young Women's Christian Association - Metropolitan Branch, Acc. URB 23

Date created 1897-01-01 – 1993-01-01
Creators YWCA Metropolitan Branch
Abstract The Young Women's Christian Association of Philadelphia (Pa.), Metropolitan Branch Records contains administrative records, correspondence, minutes, financial records, photographs, publications, committee records, project records, and other materials by and related to the YWCA of Philadelphia, Metropolitan Branch, as well as other Philadelphia branches of the organization.
Description These records include a great deal of information about both procedural matters—including relationships with other YWCA groups—and daily activities and services. As minutes, reports, and other sources show, the YWCA Metropolitan Branch ran a boarding house, restaurant, lending library, employment bureau, and more. There is also a fair amount of information about women's contributions to the war effort. Within these administrative records are also hints of what the women who ran the YWCA believed about gender. Minutes, for instance, regularly include memorials to members who have died, providing not only biographical material but also indications of the qualities they valued and believed women should have. Reports and other documents note that their work was necessary to protect young working women from the temptations that their low wages would otherwise lead them to indulge in. While these papers thus shed light on the particular feminist vision of elite, white, Protestant women, there is little to provide insight into the experiences of members.
Research interest These papers would largely be of interest to two groups of researchers: those interested in institutions, particularly women's institutions, and those interested in late nineteenth and early twentieth-century attempts to curb urban "vice." Historians can see how such campaigns were overlaid with assumptions about class, ideal womanhood, and other factors.
Size 125 lf
Geographical location
Full collection description Home repository description for Young Women's Christian Association - Metropolitan Branch, Acc. URB 23
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Contributing institution Temple University Libraries
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