Missoula Women for Peace Research Files, 2000  PDF  XML

Overview of the Collection

Missoula Women for Peace
Missoula Women for Peace Research Files
2000 (inclusive)
1.0 linear foot, (32 digital files (2.0 MB))
Collection Number
Mss 580
This collection contains research materials related to the Missoula Women for Peace Oral History Project conducted by Dawn Walsh in 2000 as part of an internship with the Jeannette Rankin Peace Resource Center and in conjunction with the Women’s Studies Department at The University of Montana—Missoula.
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
Missoula, MT
Telephone: 406-243-2053
Fax: 406-243-4067
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.


Historical NoteReturn to Top

The activist group Missoula Women for Peace (MWP) was formed in 1970 by a group of Missoula, Montana mothers and other community members concerned with the escalating American military presence in Vietnam. During the Vietnam War the group was extremely active, participating in peace marches, working to end the draft, and writing letters to local, state and national officials to protest the conflict in Vietnam. In the years following the Vietnam War, MWP members continued to educate themselves and the public on a broad array of peace related issues by hosting and attending lectures, reading books, distributing literature and holding public meetings. The group also initiated an annual bake sale on April 15th, Tax Day during the 1970s, to alert citizens to the significant amount of their tax dollars used for military purposes.

MWP continued to be an active voice for peace and social justice in Missoula throughout the 1980s. The group became a member of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom in 1981, a relationship that proved beneficial to both organizations through the exchange of information, speakers and financial support. In 1985 MWP group members succeeded in placing a statue of Montana’s prominent peace activist, suffragette and politician, Jeannette Rankin, in the Statuary Hall of the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C. The 1980s also marked the beginning of the group’s Peace Consortium Dinners, a monthly gathering of peace groups in the Missoula area. From these dinners and similar collaborative events came the idea for a clearinghouse of peace resources in Western Montana. This vision was realized when MWP members, along with countless other groups and individuals, facilitated the opening of the Jeanette Rankin Peace Center in 1986.

The 1990s and the beginning of the 21st century have seen a slowdown in MWP sponsored activities as the founding members grow older. Yet, the group continues to meet on a regular basis and sponsor many of its annual events such as the Tax Day Bake Sale. MWP has also vigorously protested the Persian Gulf War of 1991, the Kosovo Conflict of the late 1990s, violence in Latin America and many other conflicts around the world, and remains optimistic that future generations will take up the fight to firmly establish world peace.

Dawn Walsh, a staff member and student of the Women’s History Department at the University of Montana, conducted the Missoula Women for Peace Oral History Project in 2000. The project was part of Walsh’s internship with the Jeannette Rankin Peace Resource Center, and was supervised by John Bertche, a board member at the Peace Center, and Anya Jabour, a history professor at The University of Montana. The objective of the project was to document and celebrate the history of Missoula Women for Peace, as well as record the personal reflections of eleven veteran group members before they grew too old to participate in oral history interviews.

During the course of the project Dawn Walsh recorded eleven individual and one group oral history interview with MWP members. She also attended and photographed MWP sponsored events such as the annual Tax Day Bake Sale and the donation of peace-related children’s books to the Missoula Public Library. Walsh also organized a banquet in honor of MWP members that was held at the Jeanette Rankin Peace Resource Center in May of 2000. After the completion of the Missoula Women for Peace Oral History Project, Walsh donated all materials compiled and created during the project’s course to the K. Ross Toole Archives with the hope that they will inspire and educate future generations of women activists.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection contains research from The Missoula Women for Peace Oral History Project, including interview transcripts, photographs and slides of MWP members and events, digital files, and organizational materials created during Dawn Walsh’s administration of the project. These resources offer a history of the creation and continued work of Missoula Women for Peace as well as an intimate look into the personal histories and activist actions of eleven group members.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Researchers are responsible for using in accordance with 17 U.S.C. and any other applicable statutes. Copyright transferred to The University of Montana-Missoula.

Preferred Citation

[Name of document or photograph number], Missoula Women for Peace Research Files, Archives and Special Collections, Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, The University of Montana—Missoula.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Preservation Note

Digital files require software that can open and read Portable Document Format files

Custodial History

Dawn Walsh compiled materials and conducted interviews for the Montana Women for Peace Oral History Project in 2000 as part of an internship with the Jeanette Rankin Peace Center and in conjunction with the Women’s Studies Department at The University of Montana--Missoula. The collection was then temporarily housed in the Women’s Studies Department at The University of Montana--Missoula, before it was brought to the K. Ross Toole Archives in 2002.

Acquisition Information

This collection was donated to the K. Ross Toole Archives by Dawn Walsh.

Processing Note

The paper records from the collection have been organized by interviewee, with one general administrative folder and one folder for photographs depicting Missoula Women for Peace members and events. Photocopies of release forms and organizational materials have been placed in this collection, and the original documents were transferred to the master oral history files of the K. Ross Toole Archives. In 2014, digital files were transferred from their 3.5 inch floppy disks and converted to Portable Document Format files.

Related Materials

The oral history tapes and transcripts from the Missoula Women for Peace Oral History Project have been assigned the numbers OH 389-01 through OH 389-12, and are available for circulation under the standard policies of the Mansfield Library at the University of Montana--Missoula.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
1/1 Missoula Women for Peace Oral History Project Organizational Materials 2000
1/2 Missoula Women for Peace Photographs Spring 2000
1/3 May MacDonald, OH 398-01 April 27, 2000
1/4 Alice Campbell, OH 398-02 March 5, 2000
1/5 Jean Pfeiffer, OH 398-03 March 4, 2000
1/6 Nancy Erickson, OH 389-04 April 11, 2000
1/7 Jackie McGiffert, OH 389-05 March 4, 2000
1/8 Sandra Perrin, OH 389-06 March 12, 2000
1/9 Valerie Clubb, OH 389-07 April 8, 2000
1/10 Mary Taylor, OH 389-08 March 27, 2000
1/11 Claudia Brown, OH 389-09 March 20, 2000
1/12 Flo Chessin, OH 389-10 March 30, 2000
1/13 Lois Hove, OH 389-11 March 29, 2000
1/14 Missoula Women for Peace Group Meeting, OH 389-12 February 28, 2000
Electronic Folder Oral History Transcripts 2000

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Peace movements--Montana --Missoula
  • Vietnamese Conflict, 1961-1975--Personal narratives, American
  • Vietnamese Conflict, 1961-1975--Protest movements--Montana--Missoula
  • Women and peace--Montana --Missoula--Societies, etc.
  • Women pacifists--Montana --Missoula--Interviews

Corporate Names

  • Missoula Women for Peace

Form or Genre Terms

  • Interviews--Montana--Missoula
  • Oral histories--Montana --Missoula
  • Photographs--Montana--Missoula
  • Slides (Photographs)--Montana--Missoula

Other Creators

  • Personal Names
    • Walsh, Dawn (author)
    Corporate Names
    • Jeannette Rankin Peace Center (Missoula, Mont.) (author)
    • University of Montana--Missoula. Dept. of Women's Studies (author)