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Women's Library Collection

Identifier: MC 1180

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists primarily of vertical files and periodicals. Most of the vertical files are on general subjects concerning women. Files were also kept on local and regional feminist or lesbian activities. The Women's Library did not subscribe to any journals, so the periodicals consist of titles received as gifts or exchanges, and are by no means complete. A few books and other materials (posters, catalogues, notices of women's conferences, etc.) are also included. Series 9 contains organizational records such as by-laws, articles of incorporation, meeting minutes, member lists, and staff communication journals, as well as materials pertaining to the closure of the Women's Library.


  • Creation: 1971-2001


Language of Materials

Materials are primarily in English. Some publications include Spanish-language content.

Access Information

Please call (479) 575-8444 or email at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.

Use Information

Restrictions Apply: Some materials have been restricted for a period of 50 years to preserve the privacy of individuals. They are available for research only with the written permission of the donor or her designated heir. These materials have been removed from the designated folders to restricted storage until they are available. In some cases, items have been replaced by photocopies with names, addresses, and telephone numbers redacted. In addition, all issues of Up and Coming and Lesbian Inciter have been restricted for a period of 50 years from the date of the donation at the request of the donor. These restrictions will be lifted in April 2044.

No Interlibrary Loan.

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical Note

The Women's Library was founded by Diana Woodall and "Guthrie'' (the publisher of Up and Coming, a Fayetteville feminist/lesbian newsletter) in 1982 to provide access to publications concerning women, particularly feminists and lesbians.


36 Linear Feet (69 boxes, 1 folder, and 1 oversize folder)

22.4 Megabytes (97 files)

Arrangement of the Papers

Material is arranged and described in nine series. Most of the vertical files were originally arranged by subject alphabetically; this arrangement has been preserved. Most other materials in the collection, including periodicals, have been arranged alphabetically.

Additional donations of materials in 2021 have been added as separate series, Series 8-9, based on provenance.

  1. Series 1. Local and Regional Activities, 1974-1991
  2. Series 2. Vertical Files Material, 1979-1991
  3. Series 3. Files from "Guthrie," 1987-1990
  4. Series 4. Files from Su Henry, 1981-1989
  5. Series 5. Mari Spehar Health Education Project Files, 1971-1981
  6. Series 6. Books and Mementos, 1970s and 1980s
  7. Series 7. Women's Periodicals, 1971-1991
  8. Series 8. Women's Library Photographs from Allyn Lord, 2000
  9. Series 9. Women's Library Organizational Records, 2021 donation, circa 1982-2001

Acquisition Information

The Women's Library Collection was donated to Special Collections by Diana Woodall in April 1994.

Most of the material came from the Women's Library files. Additional clippings, periodicals, flyers, and other materials were donated by ``Guthrie'' and Su Henry. The Women's Library also incorporates the library of the Mari Spehar Health Education Project. Mari Spehar was a Fayetteville woman who died in 1977 from complications caused by the use of a Dalkon Shield IUD.

Three photographs (Series 8) were donated by former Women's Library board member Allyn Lord of Fayetteville, Arkansas, on September 17, 2021.

In 2001, upon the closure of the Women's Library, one box of materials (Series 9) was deposited with Special Collections. In 2021, those materials were formally donated to Special Collections, with the approval of former Women's Library board members Chris Christoffel, Wanda Stephens, Diana Woodall, Martha Go Strealy, and Allyn Lord.

Separated Materials

The Feminist and LGBT Publications were separated from the Fayetteville Women's Library Collection to form a discrete collection in 2015:

Feminist and LGBT Publications MC 2022

Processing Information

Processed by Vera Ekechukwu and Nan Lawler, Special Collections Division, University of Arkansas Libraries, Fayetteville, Arkansas, in June 1994.

In April 2019, duplicates originally separated from the collection were re-integrated, as were two posters not included in the original finding aid, and Series 7 was partially re-processed by Katrina Windon to include issue-level rather than box-level description of serials. In October 2021, an additional donation of photographs from Allyn Lord was integrated into the collection by Katrina Windon as Series 8. Organizational records originally held on deposit and formally donated in 2021 were integrated into the collection by Katrina Windon as Series 9.


Women's Library Collection
Vera Ekechukwu and Nan Lawler
June 1994
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Department Repository

University of Arkansas Libraries
365 N. McIlroy Avenue
Fayetteville AR 72701 United States
(479) 575-8444