Item #4780 [Manuscript Notebook Recording the Meeting Minutes for the Young Women's Missionary Society]. Women, Missionaries, Ohio.
[Manuscript Notebook Recording the Meeting Minutes for the Young Women's Missionary Society]

[Manuscript Notebook Recording the Meeting Minutes for the Young Women's Missionary Society]

[Oxford, Oh. 1913-1929]. 169pp. Contemporary notebook bound in limp black cloth, sewn. Covers chipped and creased, with a closed vertical tear, spine perished but well-sewn and holding strong. Occasional toning to text. Good plus. Item #4780

An informative manuscript minutes book recording monthly meeting activities written by a series of recording secretaries for the Young Ladies Missionary Society of the United Presbyterian Church of Oxford, Ohio over the course of more than fifteen years in the early-20th century. Later in the volume, the group begins referring to itself as the Young Women's Missionary Society. The meeting notes range from a few lines to more than one page, with most consisting of two-thirds of a page or more. The notes generally open with the month and date, followed by an opening statement identifying the location of the meeting and sometimes how many members attended that month's meeting. During the meetings, the women engage in scripture lessons, the singing of religious songs, report on club finances, and are often treated to a paper or presentation on a variety of subjects related to missionary work. The subjects of the papers include China, works of the Mission Press, African Americans, Mexico, Mormonism, South America, children's issues, immigration, mission work in Alaska, home missions, and a variety of other subjects, with numerous presentations focusing on Native Americans.

A typical entry from the second meeting recorded here on August 11, 1913 reads as follows: "The July meeting of the Y.L.M.S. was held at the Parsonage. As this was the month for the picnic, the Ladies Missionary Society was invited to be us. Miss Elizabeth Wallace was the devotional leader and had a very interesting program which consisted of short poems, the scripture lesson, memory verses from the Bible, and some Bible songs. Miss Beaton read a splendid paper on 'An Educational Revolution in China.' The carpet for the church was discussed, after which we adjourned and enjoyed a fine picnic supper on the lawn. Ruth Stephenson Sect." In addition to the monthly entries, the minutes book also contains occasional lists of members, providing additional valuable information on the composition of the society, and occasional financial statements or detailed treasurer's reports, enumerating informative financial data on the functioning of the organization.

The location of the group was ferreted out of clues in the text, including a handful of references to activities in Cincinnati, a note about the membership deciding at one point to gather "old papers and magazines for the Champion Coated Paper Company," whose western paper mill was located in Hamilton, Ohio, and most pointedly, there is one financial report headed, "Report of the Treas[urer] of Y.W.M.S. of the U.P. Church of Oxford O. for year ending Mar 31, 1919." Information is scant on this local Ohio women's organization devoted to missionary work, though the present work should certainly illuminate their activities both before and well after the First World War.

Price: $1,250.00

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