Five College Archives and Manuscript Collections
Home >> Sophia Smith Collection >> Virginia Heim George Papers, 1925-1981
Smith College seal
Virginia Heim George Papers, 1925-1981
2 boxes (1 linear ft.)
Collection number: 221

Abstract:
YWCA executive, YWCA overseas secretary, and USO official. Most material in the George papers pertains to her foreign secretary work in South America and Czechoslovakia and her USO work in the Caribbean. Personal letters and travel diaries include descriptions of life in Brazil and the Caribbean and in post-war Czechoslovakia and West Germany. Material also includes speeches, clippings and photographs.

Terms of Access and Use:

Restrictions on access:

The collection is open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection.

Restrictions on use:

The Sophia Smith Collection owns copyright to unpublished works of Virginia Heim George. Copyright to materials created by others may be owned by those individuals or their heirs or assigns. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights. Permission must be obtained from the Sophia Smith Collection to publish reproductions or quotations beyond "fair use."

Sophia Smith Collection
Smith College
Northampton, MA

Biographical Note
1908Born in St. Joseph, Missouri
1929University of Wisconsin, major in economics
1929-40
Program Director, YWCA, working with industrial workers, Kansas City, Utica, Pittsburgh
Camp Director, YWCA
1937Carnegie Institute of Technology, graduate study in group work
1940-43Executive Director, YWCA, Rio de Janiero, Brazil
1943-45Regional Assistant Director of USO, Brazil, Caribbean Area
1946-48Program Consultant, YWCA, Czechoslovakia, with two-week special
1948-51National staff, YWCA, Community Division, working with business
1951-53Group work and recreational director, YWCA, Oakland, California
1953-56Executive Director, YWCA, Yakima, Washington
1956-66Executive Director, YWCA, Utica, New York
1962-64Advisor, YWCA, Taipei, Taiwan
1966-71Advisor, YWCA, Colombia, with three short periods in Lima, Peru
1971Executive Director, YWCA, Omaha, Nebraska
2003?Virginia Heim George died circa 2003
Scope and Contents of the Collection
Virginia Heim (right) and others in
            Bogota, Columbia, circa 1966-71

Virginia Heim (right) and others in
Bogota, Columbia, circa 1966-71

The Virginia Heim George Papers consist of one linear foot of correspondence, diaries, clippings, and photographs. The inclusive dates are 1925 to 1981, but the major portion of the material dates from 1940 to 1948, related to her foreign secretary work for the YWCA in South America and Czechoslovakia and her USO work in the Caribbean.

The papers are divided into two series, PERSONAL and PROFESSIONAL. The PERSONAL material contains correspondence and diaries, both ranging from 1940 to 1981. The correspondence consists of letters to her family, mostly to her mother, with a small amount of incoming correspondence from family and friends, 1945-50. The nine diaries consist of six written between 1940 and 1948, plus three travel accounts from 1953, 1965, and 1981. Both the letters and diaries provide a detailed description of George's life while working for the YWCA and the USO. She was an eager and enthusiastic participant in her work and also took advantage of the opportunities it provided to travel extensively. She was a keen observer of the countries she visited and the people she met. Her wartime letters as well and those from postwar Czechoslovakia reflect the mail censorship of the times. As a result the diaries and the occasional letters that she was able to write freely are more candid. The diaries written from her two trips to Czechoslovakia in 1965 and 1981 contain particularly interesting accounts of life there, and the 1965 account reports earlier arrests and trials, particularly an incident involving the YWCA in 1948.

The PROFESSIONAL material consist of clippings and articles about George and her work, 1925-1975, three reports from her Czechoslovakia and Germany experiences, 1948, and a nine-page speech on the USO, ca. 1945. In this series are also fifteen photographs, five of the USO, six related to the YWCA, and four of women in Puerto Rico.

This collection is organized into two series:


Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

The collection is open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection.

Restrictions on use:

The Sophia Smith Collection owns copyright to unpublished works of Virginia Heim George. Copyright to materials created by others may be owned by those individuals or their heirs or assigns. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights. Permission must be obtained from the Sophia Smith Collection to publish reproductions or quotations beyond "fair use."

Preferred Citation

Please use the following format when citing materials from this collection:

Virginia Heim George Papers, Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College, Northampton, MA

Additional Formats

Selections from the Virginia Heim George Papers can be viewed in the Web exhibit "An Ever-Widening Circle of Friendship": YWCA Overseas Secretaries from China to Liberia.

History of the Collection

The Virginia Heim George Papers were a gift of Mrs. George in 1989.

Processing Information

Processed by Susan Boone, 1990.


Additional Information
Contact Information
Sophia Smith Collection
Smith College
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: (413) 585-2970
Fax: (413) 585-2886

Email Reference Form: http://www.smith.edu/libraries/libs/ssc/emailform.html
URL: http://www.smith.edu/libraries/libs/ssc/
Language
English.
Sponsor
Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Contents List
SERIES I. PERSONAL



Correspondence



Outgoing to family



1940

Box 1: folder 1
1941

Box 1: folder 2
1943

Box 1: folder 3
1944 Feb-Jun

Box 1: folder 4
1944 Jul-Dec

Box 1: folder 5
1945 Jan-Jun

Box 1: folder 6
1945 Jul-Dec

Box 1: folder 7
1946 Jan-Jun

Box 1: folder 8
1946 Jul-Dec

Box 1: folder 9
1947

Box 2: folder 10
1948

Box 2: folder 11
1951-81

Box 2: folder 12
Incoming



Mildred Heim Gumm (sister),
1945-50

Box 2: folder 13
Friends,
1945-46, n.d.

Box 2: folder 14
Miscellaneous


Box 2: folder 15
Diaries



Jul-Nov 1940 (Brazil)

Box 2: folder 16
Jan-Feb 1941 (Brazil)

Box 2
Jan-Feb 1943 (Brazil-San Francisco River trip)

Box 2: folder 17
1945-46 (Puerto Rico, Czechoslovakia)

Box 2
1946-47 (Czechoslovakia)

Box 2: folder 18
1947-48 (Scandinavia, Czechoslovakia, Switzerland)

Box 2
1959? (U.S. trip itinerary)

Box 2: folder 19
1965 (Czechoslovakia)

Box 2
1981 (Czechoslovakia)

Box 2
SERIES II. PROFESSIONAL



Clippings, articles,
1925-75

Box 2: folder 20
Reports, speech,
1945, 1948

Box 2: folder 21
Photographs



YWCA


Box 2: folder 22
USO


Box 2: folder 23
Puerto Rico


Box 2: folder 24

Search Terms
The following terms represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. Use these headings to search for additional materials on this web site, in the Five College Library Catalog, or in other library catalogs and databases.

Subjects
  • Brazil--History--20th century--Sources
  • Caribbean area--History--20th century--Sources
  • Czechoslovakia--History--1945-1992--Sources
  • George, Virginia Heim, 1908-
  • United Service Organizations (U.S.)--History--Sources
  • Young Women's Christian Association of the U.S.A.--History--Sources
  • Young Women's Christian Association--South America--History--Sources
  • Young Women's Christian Association--World War, 1939-1945--War Work


Questions about this collection? Contact the archives
Home | Help | About | Search