Annette Kar Baxter Papers
Scope and Contents of the Collection
The Annette Kar Baxter Papers consist of 30 linear feet, dating from 1905 to 1984, and primarily document her professional and public life. Types of material include correspondence, memoranda, speeches, publications, articles, photographs, address books, agendas, organization files, bibliographies, lecture notes, research material, manuscripts, minutes, newsletters, notes, and journal and newspaper articles.
Baxter's papers provide a rich and detailed view of the life of an academic--at both the departmental and college-wide level- and a woman who combined career and motherhood. Baxter filled her days with committee meetings, student recommendations, and inter-departmental disputes; she even entertained her students in her home on a regular basis. She found time to research and write and speak on a wide range of topics, even as she made an effort to spend summers away from the city with her family. At the forefront of emerging American and women's studies, her correspondence, writing, teaching, and subject files reveal the thrills and frustrations that come with advancing new disciplines, while advocating traditional, single-sex educational programs.
While the bulk of the papers date from 1943 to 1983, and focus on Baxter's academic career, the collection also contains material related to her home life. James Baxter's writings, correspondence, and alumni activities are fairly well represented in SERIES I. BIOGRAPHICAL MATERIALS and correspondence with the rest of the family can be found in SERIES II. CORRESPONDENCE.
Although the series designations flow naturally from the types of materials within the collection, significant portions needed to be rearranged because a specific order was not discernable. As the chair of two departments, Baxter often had numerous copies of materials. She also kept home and work files for important work-related matters that needed to be sorted through and integrated. Correspondence files were scattered throughout the collection, and sometimes were arranged chronologically, sometimes segregated between personal and professional, and sometimes not arranged at all. Other areas of the collection, however, such as her class notes while a student and her research notes for writing projects remain very near her original order. For example, in her unfinished book, Foreign Views of American Women, one can see which items she decided to discard and why. Also, while her class files were purged of social security numbers and grades, these files remain in much the same arrangement as she kept them, by class and year.