- Rankin family
- Rankin Family Papers
- 1888-1946 (inclusive)18881946
- 3.0 linear feet
- Collection Number
- Mss 280 (collection)
- The Rankins were a Missoula, Montana, family with a mill business. The collection includes a broad range of John Rankin's financial records, 1888-1906; speeches and clippings of Jeannette Rankin from 1916-1941, her 1940 congressional campaign, and a Report of International Congress of Women, 1919; and Wellington Rankin's 1946 campaign and two Montana Supreme Court cases, 1925 and 1941, in which he served, respectively, as attorney for the plaintiff and attorney for the defendant.
- University of Montana, Mansfield Library, Archives and Special Collections
Archives and Special Collections
Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library
University of Montana
32 Campus Dr. #9936
- Access Restrictions
Researchers must use collection in accordance with the policies of Archives and Special Collections, the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, and The University of Montana--Missoula.
- Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Biographical NoteReturn to Top
John Rankin, the son of Scottish immigrant Hugh Rankin, was born in Apin, Ontario, Canada in 1841. He was the fourth born of seven sons and four daughters. John Rankin was reared on his father's frontier farm, with little in the way of formal education.
In the fall of 1870, John Rankin moved to Missoula, Montana, and was on his way to being a successful Montana landowner, lumberman, and politician when he married Olive Pickering in 1879. Together, they had six children. After his initial success in the mill business, he became involved in contracting and was instrumental in the construction of Missoula's first stone building, as well as the town's first bridges. In 1891 the Rankin block was erected on East Front Street in Missoula. Following a short illness, John Rankin died in May 3, 1904 of tick fever.
Jeannette Rankin, the eldest daughter of John and Olive Rankin, was born in 1880 and achieved international recognition for her work as a pacifist, particularly in her efforts to keep the United States out of World War II. Jeannette Rankin was prominent suffragette and the first woman to serve in the United States Congress. She died in 1973.
Wellington Rankin, John and Olive Rankin's only son, was born in September, 1884. A front page obituary in the Missoulian touted Wellington Rankin as a millionaire and listed his accomplishments as a lawyer, politician, and rancher. He died in June, 1966.
Content DescriptionReturn to Top
The collection includes a broad range of John Rankin's financial records, 1888-1906; speeches and clippings of Jeannette Rankin from 1916-1941, her 1940 congressional run, and a Report of International Congress of Women, 1919; and Wellington Rankin's 1946 campaign and two Montana Supreme Court cases, 1925 and 1941, in which he served, respectively, as attorney for the plaintiff and attorney for the defendant.
Use of the CollectionReturn to Top
Researchers are responsible for using in accordance with 17 U.S.C. and any other applicable statutes. Copyright not transferred to The University of Montana.
[Name of document], Rankin Family Papers, Archives and Special Collections, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, The University of Montana--Missoula.
Administrative InformationReturn to Top
The collection is divided into three series:
Series I: John Rankin, 2.5 linear feet, 1888-1905
Series II: Wellington Rankin, 0.2 linear feet, 1925-1941
Series III: Jeannette Rankin, 0.3 linera feet, 1916-1941
The materials in this collection remained in the possession of the Rankin Family until donation to the Mansfield Library.
Gift of Jeannette Rankin, date unknown.
The actions of the original processors are unknown. In 2000, the collection was re-described.
The Montana Historical Society holds a substantial collection of Wellington Rankin's papers. Jeannette Rankin's papers are at the Schlessinger Library at Radcliffe College.
Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top
Series I: John Rankin , 1888-1905Return to Top
This series includes some financial records from Rankin's most notable endeavors such as the Rankin Block, the Rankin House, and lumber mills in Missoula. Those records pertain to day-to-day operating expenses and income. Two larger ledgers give a broader overview of Rankin's financial matters. Wherever possible the records have been arranged chronologically but gaps do exist.
Rankin House Rules and Miscellaneous Financial
Rankin Hotel Block Laundry Records
Grant Creek Mill Financial Records
Mill Day Book
Register for Rankin Block
Rankin House Room Book No. 1
Rankin House Room Book No. 2
Rankin House Room Book No. 3
Rankin House Room Book No. 4
Rankin House Room Book No. 5
Rankin House Room Book No. 6
Rankin House Room Book No. 7
Rankin House Room Book
Rankin House Room Book
Florence Steam Laundry Day Book
Series II: Wellington Rankin , 1925-1941Return to Top
This series includes the trail transcript for the 1925 Montana Supreme Court personal injury case of plaintiff, Velma H. Riggs, vs. defendant, Lew Webb. Wellington Rankin served as the attorney for plaintiff, Riggs. The series also includes the 1946 Montana Supreme Court decision in the case of A.E. Cramer vs. The Montana State Board of Food Distributors. Wellington Rankin served as an attorney for the defendants. The records of Wellington Rankin's 1948 congressional run include a pamphlet stating his platform and a copy of a speech by Senator Dan W. Maddox endorsing Rankin's candidacy.
Velma H. Riggs v. Lew Webb, Montana Supreme Court
A.E. Cramer v. Montana State Board of Food Distribution, Montana Supreme Court
Wellington Rankin, Campaign
Series III: Jeannette Rankin , 1916-1941Return to Top
This series includes a speech made by Jeannette Rankin on women's suffrage, excerpts from other Rankin speeches regarding Measures Touching the Interest of the People of Montana, a radio address on Women and Democracy by Rankin, and other speeches discussing defense issues. The series also includes additional miscellaneous material relating to Jeannette Rankin's 1940 congressional run. The Report of the International Congress of Women, which took place in Zurich in 1919, lists Jeannette Rankin as a delegate from the United States. This volume has sections in English, French, and German.
Speeches and Clippings
Jeannette Rankin, Congressional Run
Report of International Congress of Women, Zurich
Names and SubjectsReturn to Top
- Scottish Americans--Montana
- Women in politics--Montana
- Rankin family
- Montana. Supreme Court
- United States. Congress. House--Elections, 1940
- United States. Congress. Senate--Elections, 1946
- Women's International League for Peace and Freedom Congress
- Montana--Politics and government--20th century
- United States--Politics and government--1933-1953
Form or Genre Terms
- Business records--Montana--Missoula
- Family papers--Montana
- Suffragists--United States
- Women legislators--United States
- Women pacifists--United States
- Rankin, Jeannette, 1880-1973
- Rankin, John
- Rankin, Welllington Duncan, 1884-1966