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Feminist Movements, 1880s to the Present

Guide to primary sources documenting feminist movements at the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture in the Rubenstein Library.

North Carolina Feminist Activists

Mandy Carter Papers (1970-2013)
Mandy Carter is a self-described "southern out black lesbian social justice activist." Since 1968 she has been involved in peace, social, racial and LGBT organizing at the local, state, regional, and national levels. She has been based in Durham, N.C., since 1982. The Mandy Carter Papers span the dates 1970 to 2013 and include files related to her work as a grassroots organizer and multi-issue social justice activist.

Mary Cowper Papers (1895-1969)
Collection documents Cowper's life as an active suffragist and as instrumental in the formation and early years of the NC League of Women Voters.

Theresa El-Amin Papers (1960s-2010)
Activist and union organizer who was involved with the Coalition of Labor Union Women, the Service Employees International Union, the Black Radical Congress, the Black Workers for Justice, Jobs with Justice, Solidarity, and the Durham NAACP. El-Amin was also a founding member of the Labor Party and the Southern Anti-Racism Network. Organizational and subject files from El-Amin's years of activism and organizing in the Service Employees International Union, the Black Radical Congress, the Southern Anti-Racism Network, and numerous other groups and causes. Also includes publications, photographs, videotapes, and correspondence.

Anne Firor Scott Papers
There are two different collections of Anne Firor Scott's papers, one in the Duke University Archives and the other in the Sallie Bingham Center. Anne Firor Scott was one of the first historians to focus on the contributions of women, particularly Southern women, and taught in the History Dept. at Duke University from 1961-1991. These collections includes correspondence, Scott's writings, and materials relating to her academic work in Southern and women's history.

Lisa Garmon Papers (1980-2007)
Resident of Chapel Hill, NC; was a multi-issue activist, organizing locally for women's rights, LGBT/queer rights, Latin American rights, and in defense of the environment.

Susan Hill Papers (1976-2003)
North Carolina native; social worker; activist for reproductive rights; founder and director, National Women's Health Organization (NWHO, an organization of eight clinics providing abortion services to under-served areas of the United States since 1976). President, National Women's Health Foundation, support foundation to the NWHO.

Margaret McFadden Papers (1970s-2009)
Feminist scholar and activist. Founder of Women's Studies Program and professor of Interdisciplinary Studies at Appalachian State University in Boone, NC. Professional papers, including published materials, conference files, materials related to Southeastern Women's Studies Association, correspondence, writings, teaching materials, subject files, research files, book notes, and book drafts. 32 linear ft. See also NWSA Journal Records.

Jean Fox O'Barr Papers (1964-2008)
Jean Fox O'Barr was a professor and founder of Duke University's Women's Studies program, as well as a co-founder of the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture. She served as an editor of Signs: a Journal of Women in Culture and Society from 1985-1990.

Minnie Bruce Pratt papers (1870s-2005 bulk 1975-2005)Minnie Bruce Pratt
An award-winning poet, Pratt has published collections of both poetry and essays. Pratt began teaching and grass roots organizing in North Carolina in the 1970s, and has continued her work as a professor and activist. The collection dates primarily between 1975 and 2005 and focuses on women's studies, sexual and gender identity, sexuality, and Pratt's fight against racism, sexism, imperialism and other forms of intolerance.

Mab Segrest Papers (1967-2002)
Southern author, feminist, gay rights and anti-racism activist. Correspondence, research files, manuscript drafts, printed materials, teaching files, and other papers concerning Segrest's career and personal life.

Miriam Slifkin Papers (1961-1994)
Miriam Slifkin founded the Chapel Hill chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) and the Orange County Rape Crisis Center. This collection contains NOW operational files including correspondence, newsletters, chapter organization records, speeches, fund raising, budget files, files on related organizations, and files related to sexual discrimination and sexual discrimination lawsuits. Other materials document the founding and early history of the Orange County Rape Crisis Center and her work on the Board of the Orange County Human Relations Commission.

Margery Sved Papers (1976-1984)
Psychiatrist and original member of the Triangle Area Lesbian Feminists (TALF). Active in the Women’s Health Teaching Group, a group of women who taught medical students about giving pelvic exams to women by allowing the students to practice on them.

Southgate Jones Family Papers (1794-2008)
Mattie Logan Southgate Jones was the president of the Durham Equal Suffrage League and Chair of the 5th District of the Equal Suffrage Association of NC.

Cookie Teer Papers (1971-2000)
The materials in the Dorothy "Cookie" Teer Papers date from 1971 to 2000, with the bulk of the collection dating between 1983 and 1997. These materials include: newspaper clippings, magazines, correspondence, photographs, meeting minutes, manuscripts, notes, published books, audio and videotapes, organizational records, and court transcripts. The collection documents Teer's activism during this period, the feminist issues with which she was concerned, feminist and anti-pornography activism in and around Chapel Hill and Durham, N.C., and the activities of the organizations of which Teer was a member, including the National Organization for Women (N.O.W.) and Pornography Awareness.

North Carolina Feminist Organizations

Carolina Wren Press Records (1972-2004)
Small press founded by Judy Hogan in Carrboro, NC. Includes the records of Lollipop Power, Inc. a collective in Chapel Hill during the 70s that published non-sexist, non-racist children's literature. Collective minutes, statement of purpose, lists of manuscript submission, and books. 

Common Woman Chorus Records (1970s-2003)My Funny Valentine flyer
Administrative files and records from Common Woman Chorus; sheet music, skits and programs from performances; and many newsletters and correspondence from other feminist and gay men's choruses such as Cincinnati's Women's Choir, Columbus Women's Chorus, GALA Choruses. The Common Woman Chorus is a feminist and non-profit organization "serving the Triangle [Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill, NC] since 1983." 

Ladyslipper, Inc. Records, 1975-2010
Distributor of women's music and independent record label in Durham, N.C., founded in 1976. The collection contains the company's administrative, subject, financial and subject files, as well as audio/visual materials and wholesale and retail catalogs, which feature women musicians, composers, and singers.

Lesbian Health Resource Center
The LHRC was a nonprofit organization founded in 1996 to provide educational workshops and resource materials on all health issues for women who partner with women. This organization is a successor to the NC Lesbian and Gay Health Project that was founded in 1982, and whose records are also held at Duke.

Resource Center for Women and Ministry in the South Records (1939-2010, bulk 1977-1990)
Durham-based organization founded in 1977 by Jeanette Stokes to provide support for women in ministry, persons of faith working for justice in the South, and religious organizations that address women's needs. Primarily printed material, correspondence, writings, clippings, account books, grant proposals, minutes, newsletters.

Southerners on New Ground Records, 1993-2003
Southerners on New Ground (SONG) works to build, connect, and sustain those in the South who believe in liberation across all lines of race, class, culture, gender and sexuality, through a membership of 600 primarily LGBT people. See also: Mandy Carter Papers; Mab Segrest Papers.

Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Records (1938-2004)
Chapel Hill branch of international peace organization founded in 1915. Meeting agendas and minutes, directories, group organizing information, correspondence (including with Senators Jesse Helms and John Edwards), photographs, more.

Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) of Durham, NC records (1920-1992)
The Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) of Durham was founded in 1920 and served the larger Durham community from the 1920s until the 1970s. The Harriet Tubman branch of the Durham YWCA served the African-American community in particular. In the 1970s, the YWCA was the home of the Durham Women's Health Co-op and the Durham Rape Crisis Center. These organizations were central to reform movements throughout Durham, from women's health and childcare to fair wages and civil rights. The YWCA of Durham records include materials reflect both the administrative history of the YWCA, as well as the programs, projects, social events, and community outreach that formed the backbone of the organization.