Ladies Literary League (Lawrence, Kan.) records
The Ladies Literary League of Lawrence, Kansas, was founded in 1882 as the Etesian Club, a women's reading club originally formed to promote culture and social intercourse. Within a few years, the group changed its name to the Ladies Literary League (LLL). This collection includes the club's records, correspondence, clippings, photographs, governance documents, yearbook/program books, secretary minute books, a recipe book, reminiscences, and histories and publications written by club members over the years.
- 1882 - 2016
- Ladies Literary League (Lawrence, Kan.) (Organization)
Conditions Governing Access
No access restrictions.
Conditions Governing Use
Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.
History of the Ladies' Literary League
Five ladies of Lawrence, Kansas met in November 1882 to organize a "ladies social reading club for mutual improvement." Initially called the Etesian Club, the name was given to the group by Mrs. Ropes, one of the charter members with a classical education.
By 1894 the group changed its name to the Ladies Literary League but went by L.L.L. in an attempt to keep its real name a secret; membership claimed when asked that the letters stood for the Lovely Lawrence Ladies.
At first every first Tuesday of the month the group read Shakespeare aloud but stopped this tradition by the early 20th century. The group also introduced a critic for each individual reading a review of a book, which tradition lasted until the 1940s. The group met weekly until the late 1950s, when it began meeting every other week.
The league for several decades took on projects beyond a literary nature, including temperance and women's suffrage. Over time they limited their activities to strictly literary activities such as book reviews and discussions. A Program Committee guides what books will be discussed; membership takes turns serving on the committee, as well as taking turns hosting the meetings at their homes.
The club makes sure to celebrate the anniversary of its founding. From early on members were concerned about retention of their records; as early as 1964, they were considering housing them in the Kansas Room at the University of Kansas' library. The club has a tradition of providing a scholarship to a KU student and donating books in memoriam to the Lawrence Public Library when a member of the club passes away.
4 Linear Feet (7 boxes)
Language of Materials
RH MS 620
RH MS 1297
RH MS 1384
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Gifts, Ladies Literary League, 1994, 1996, 2002, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015, and 2018.
Materials from RH MS 620 Box 3 are now located at RH MS 1297 Boxes 1-3.
- Guide to the Ladies Literary League Collection
- Ladies Literary League (Lawrence, Kan.) records
- Finding aid prepared by mab, 1/17/2006; revised ea, 2013 Finding aid encoded by mab, 2006; revised by cmp, 2022
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Finding aid written in English.
- Finding aid permalink
- Preferred citation
Ladies Literary League (Lawrence, Kan.) records, RH MS 620, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas
Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository
1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States