Letter from Mrs. Nell Richmond to Julie Isenberg


Letter from Mrs. Nell Richmond to Julie Isenberg




This letter is written by Nell Richmond, wife of the president of Smith College and head of the Alumnae Association, in response to Isenberg's intrest in expanding the Alumnae Association's involvement in education reform at local levels. Richmond stated that the college will agree to send another representative to the American Alumni Association's Seminar on Public Responsibility (an organization of college educated men and women seeking to improve education in areas of history and goverment) for that upcoming year, however the college would not support direct chapter involvments with local education reform movements. Richmond plainly stated "... to a woman, we felt that it is not the place of the Alumnae Association to recommend that Smith clubs as such take up the better-ment of local education as a club activity." While Richmond urged that Smith alumnae should become involved in such matters, she stressed that they should do so on an individual level. Richmond reiterated that " We cannot begin to have political overtones.." This letter illustrates that while major strides had been made for women in education by the 1960's, education and the public sphere were still very much divided by gender lines. Isenberg recognized the importance of education reform and that it would allow women to become better informed voters and better able to advocate for their own political interests.


Mrs. Nell Richmond


Collection: 276 Box: Folder:3


University of Memphis Libraries


June 15, 1961


Digital Image © 2016, University of Memphis Libraries Preservation and Special Collections Department. All rights reserved.




Mrs. Nell Richmond , “Letter from Mrs. Nell Richmond to Julie Isenberg,” Making an Impact: The Lives of Tennessee Women, accessed November 29, 2021, https://umhist4851.omeka.net/items/show/118.

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