Additional audiotapes of the National Organization for Women, ca.1970-2001
Language of Materials
National Organization for Women (NOW) board meetings (#727-936, 981) are closed for 20 years. NOW grievance hearings (#982-983) are closed until January 1, 2048. NOW Political Action Committee (PAC) meetings (#421, 435-442, 456-460, 489-538, 677A-H, 937) are closed pending negotiations between the Schlesinger Library and the NOW PAC. #1069 is closed until January 1, 2027.
As of December 2015, written permission of the National Organization for Women (NOW) is no longer required for access to Series III and IV.
Conditions Governing Use
Copying. Open audiotapes may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.
Series II, Regional and Subject Conferences, 1977-1998 (#323-414), includes informal and professional recordings from the following conferences: National Lesbian Rights Conference. "Power Through Action" (1988); National Young Feminist Conference (1991); Global Feminist Conference. "Celebrating the Past, Committing to the Future" (1992); and Women of Color and Allies Summit (1998). Conferences are organized chronologically by subseries, and in numerical order therein.
Series III, NOW National and Regional Board and Political Action Committee (PAC) Meetings, ca.1970s-2001, n.d. (#415-937), includes informal recordings of national, regional, and Political Action Committee (PAC) meetings. Recordings of many meetings appear to be complete; tapes from the earlier years often fill in gaps where tapes were missing for meetings listed in NOW's audio collection (T-29), processed in 2004. Note that some items with only cities in the title are presumably regional meetings, but may also be meetings of the national board. PAC meetings are noted as such. The series is arranged in chronological order.
Series IV, Miscellaneous Meetings, 1977-2001 (#938-992), contains documentation of organizational meetings, briefings, and workshops on topics such as the ERA and reproductive rights, as well as a retreat and celebratory dinners. The recordings appear to be singular in nature, or their relationship to another larger group of tapes cannot be firmly established.
Series V, Appearances, Interviews, and Public Service Announcements, 1974-1997, n.d. (#993-1039), contains radio interviews and public appearances by NOW representatives, particularly past president Eleanor Smeal, and radio spots promoting the ERA, NOW-sponsored marches, and "Get Out the Vote" campaigns.
Series VI, NOW v. Scheidler Court Case Research and Exhibit Materials, 1977-1999 (#1040-1161), includes audio recordings collected or created by NOW's lawyers during the "discovery" (or research) phase of the lawsuit, or officially submitted as evidence, for the court case filed by NOW in 1986, in an attempt to use federal antitrust and racketeering laws to bar pro-life protesters from blocking entrances to women's health care clinics providing abortion services. Initially NOW named pro-life activist Joseph Scheidler and other members of his Pro-Life Action League as the main defendants, but Randall Terry and his group Operation Rescue were added to the lawsuit in 1988. These recordings document their organizations' activities and the pro-life movement across the United States in the 1980s and 1990s generally. Materials are organized by subseries as close to NOW's organizational scheme as possible, and in chronological order therein. For related material and more detailed information on the court case, see MC 666, Series VII.
Subseries A, Joe Scheidler Radio Interviews and Public Appearances, 1979-1997, n.d. (#1040-1074; 1161), contains appearances by Joe Scheidler on radio programs across the United States and abroad, and public appearances at Pro-Life Action League and similar groups' events.
Subseries B, Pro-Life Action News and Similar Hotlines, 1984-1999 (#1075-1115), contains informal recordings of action alerts and news updates pertaining to the nationwide "pro-life" movement, many of which feature Joe Scheidler as speaker.
Subseries C, Plaintiff's Exhibit Materials, 1982-1997, n.d. (#1116-1148), contains a selection of materal exhibited as evidence in the case: pro-life hotline recordings; radio interviews with, and public appearances by, primarily Joe Scheidler, at pro-life conferences, before religious groups sympathetic to his cause, and at universities. Tapes are identified with the two letters PX identifying who produced the material, followed by a number, which were used to track the materials during the court case.
Subseries D, Miscellaneous Health Care Clinic Violence and Related Research Material, 1977-1998, n.d. (#1149-1160), includes live events and radio programs featuring representatives from NOW and the pro-life movement, both together and separately. Live events include sessions from NOW, West Virginia for Life, and Operation Rescue (including an interview with an attendee) conferences. With the exception of the West Virginia for Life conference, the majority of the content is regarding protests at women's health care clinics.
Titles in quotation marks are transcribed from tape labels; those without are supplied by the cataloger.
- Series I. NOW National Conferences, 1978-1998 (#1-322)
- Series II. Regional and Subject Conferences, 1977-1998 (#323-414)
- Series III. NOW National and Regional Board and Political Action Committee (PAC) Meetings, ca. 1970s-2001, n.d. (#415-937)
- Series IV. Miscellaneous Meetings, 1977-2001 (#938-992)
- Series V. Appearances, Interviews, and Public Service Announcements, 1974-1997, n.d. (#993-1039)
- Series VI. NOW v. Scheidler Court Case Research and Exhibit Materials, 1977-1999 (#1040-1161)
Immediate Source of Acquisition
These addenda to the audiotape collection of the National Organization for Women were given to the Schlesinger Library by the National Organization for Women between August 2004 and December 2010.
By: Melissa Dollman
- Abortion--Law and legislation--United States
- Abortion--United States
- Equal rights amendments--United States
- Feminism--United States
- Feminists--United States
- Legal documents
- Political action committees
- Pro-life movement--United States
- Radio programs
- Radio public service announcements
- Second-wave feminism--United States
- Women political activists--United States
- Women's rights--United States
- Women--Social conditions--United States
- National Organization for Women. Additional audiotapes of the National Organization for Women, ca.1970-2001: A Finding Aid T-466
- Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
- EAD ID
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