The Frances E. Willard papers are arranged in one half-size box and date between 1871 and 1978. General biographical materials including articles and pamphlets relating to Willard's work on behalf of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union and Northwestern University; brief biographies written by Senator Albert J. Beveridge of Indiana (1905), and Gertrude Stevens Leavitt (1908); and other related items are arranged in the first folder of the series. Following that are clippings and excerpts from newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals.
A few materials relating to the 1898 presentation to Northwestern University of a marble sculpture of Frances Willard are foldered together. The sculpture was executed by the noted American artist Lorado Taft.
A small amount of correspondence, both incoming and outgoing and dating from 1872, 1874-1876, 1886-1887, 1893, and 1895-1898, documents Willard's concerns regarding temperance and higher education for women. Of particular interest is Willard's lengthy letter of June 16, 1874, to the Northwestern University faculty criticizing changes in the University's rules of conduct for female students. Correspondence is arranged in chronological order.
A few articles, a temperance pamphlet and address, and excerpts from some of Willard's other writings are arranged in one folder chronologically by date of publication. Finally, an 1884 temperance petition, presented by Willard to the national convention of the Prohibition Party, is foldered at the end of the series.
Addition, Box 1
The addition consists of four folders containing items related to the centenary of Frances Willard's birth, recent news clippings, and correspondence with Northwestern University and the University Archives regarding Frances Willard.
The items documenting the 1939 centenary of Frances Willard's birth include articles, a cloth souvenir map showing the location of all Willard memorials across the United States, “The Uncrowned Queen” (a “dramatic monolog” by Jane Good of the Northwestern University School of Speech), and a first-day cover with the five-cent Frances Willard commemorative postage stamp (issued March 1940).
Undated items consist of a puppet play, “Born to Lead,” by Helen Elliott (published by the Signal Press) and a description of the Frances Willard Memorial Library at the W.C.T.U. headquarters in Evanston.
Some biographical information and news clippings were incorporated into the original series. Added to the materials in Folder 4 (“Willard Sculpture by Lorado Taft, 1898”) were an engraved invitation to the formal presentation of the bust (1898) and a letter from Taft to the Lunt Library staff regarding the loan of the sculpture for an exhibit at the Art Institute (1899).