Wisconsin Library Heritage Center

The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center is a program of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation promoting understanding and appreciation of the history of libraries and librarianship in Wisconsin.

Error
  • JUser: :_load: Unable to load user with id: 52
Subscribe to feed Viewing entries tagged Tower Hill Wisconsin

Lutie Stearns and the Woman's Congress at Tower Hill, WI

Posted by
has not set their biography yet
User is currently offline
on Thursday, March 01, 2012
in Events

pc-wi-tower-hill-72

This article was also posted on The Library History Buff Blog.   

For Women's History Month I thought I would post a story about Lutie Stearns, one of Wisconsin's greatest library pioneers. As often happens, a piece of postal librariana was the stimulus for my engaging in some library history research. I was delighted when I researched a picture postcard depicting the Ann Mitchell Library at Tower Hill, Wisconsin (shown above) to find that there was a link between Tower Hill and Lutie Stearns. Tower Hill is now the Tower Hill State Park, but was originally the summer retreat of Jenkin Lloyd Jones, a prominent Unitarian minister. As is explained in the first issue of La Follette's Weekly Magazine (January 9, 1909), Jones sponsored an annual Woman's Congress at Tower Hill. The guests at the Woman's Congress were limited to twenty-five invited individuals, and the speakers and topics for the Congress were selected by a committee which Lutie Stearns chaired for several years. Stearns at the time was on the staff of the Wisconsin Free Library Commission which she helped to found in 1891. In addition to her advocacy for free public libraries and traveling libraries, Stearns was an outspoken advocate for women and their role in society. Library Journal (October, 1916) reported on on a Library Congress held at Tower Hill in August of 1916. This Congress was also chaired by Lutie Stearns. Librarians from Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan, and North Dakota participated in this informal gathering to discuss library issues and to relax. It is in that Library Journal article which was written by Stearns that mention is made of the Ann Mitchell Library.  It notes that: "The afternoons during the week were given over to informal conferences and visits to the Ann Mitchell Library building on the Tower Hill grounds, which was found to be well supplied with the classics as well as the better part of latter-day literature." I have been unable to determine the identity of Ann Mitchell. Jones was a promoter of women in the ministry so perhaps she was a minister. The library and the building that housed it no longer exist. I also have a blog post about Lutie's speech impediment and her proposal for a book wagon. I highly recommend a book about Lutie for young people titled Books in a Box.

Recent comment in this post Show all comments
  • Christine Pawley says #
    So glad you posted this, Larry. I was just reading in Stearns's "My Seventy-five Years: Part III, from the Wisconsin Magazine of ...

Categories

Popular Tags

Cooperative Children's Book Center Suring Area Public Library Larry T. Nix T. B. Scott Free Public Library Helen Adams Digital Collections Klaus Linderfelt Public libraries library memorabilia Campaing for Wisconsin Libraries Library Trustees Wisconsin Library Bulletin Beaver Dam Public Library Milwaukee Public Library UW-Milwaukee Libraries Pinback buttons Bernard Schwab WLA 125 Wisconsin Literary Travel Guide Hall of Fame 2012 Hall of Fame 2015 Black River Falls Katharine MacDonald Jones Cam bed and breakfast Hall of Fame 2012 Ice Storm traveling libraries School of Library and Information Studies Milwaukee Art Museum membership libraries 20 Nolan I. Neds Frank Avery Hutchins Portage Public Library WLA 125 ca trav People Library Systems Woman's Congress Wisconsin Free Library Commission Ruby Roeder Library people Library People Postcards Dianne McAfee Hopkins Academic Librarians WLA 125 caly film Marketing-Publicity Ripon Public Library School libraries John Miller Chancellor Hall of Fame 2016 Special libraries S. Janice Kee Carnegie libraries Gilbert H. Doane Evansville Wisconsin Hall fo Fame 2012 14 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries campaign Hall of Fame 2015 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Buttons American Library Association Library War Service 28 Library Artifacts Library Buildings 24 campaign Gertrude Thurow presentations Madison Public Library Carl Spitzweg Clinton Public Library Hall of Fame 2010 Wisconsin State Normal School-Milwaukee Hall 10 Sandra Friedman Dolnick campa Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library state historical society Wilbur Lyle Eberhart Events Lucy E. Smith Morris campaign Wayne A. Wiegand Academic Libraries library legislation Meter mail slogans Irene W. Newman James Huff Stout 22 National Library Week Library people Postcards Exhibits Milwaukee Public Library Richard E. Krug Jane K. Billings Wisconsin Rapids White House Conference on Library and Information Services Brown Deer Public Library Hall of Fame 2017 CCBC Association of Library Trustees Advocates and Friends Events & Meetings Charles Bunge Library History Campaign archives Lutie Stearns Wisconsin Free Library Commission World War I Public libraries Parcel post Hall of Fame 2015 11 J. D. Witter Cornelia Marving Pierce Inform Wisconsin WAAL Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Gerald A. Somers Beloit Public Library Bob Bochfer Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Appleton Public Library Hall of Fame 2008 Council on Library and Network Development anniversaries Ruth Ann Montgomery Hall of Fame 2013 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Events & Meetings Black River Falls Public Library John J. Jax hall of Capitol Fire 1904 Wisconsin Federation of Women's Clubs Hall of Fame 2011 Amer Anniversaries UW-Madison school of library and information studies Campaign 27 Increase A. Lapham Wisconsin Historical Society Library e Anniversaries UW-Milwaukee School of Information Studies Hall of Fame 2018 library exhibit Eratus Swift Wilcox Eager Free Public Library caly film Rusk County Community Library Wisconsin Library Association Edward Asahel Birge Wisconsin State Law Library COLAND Louise S. Robbins 23 Matthew S. Dudgeon Hartford Public Library McMillan Memorial Library Library celebrations Governor's Conference on Library and Information Services Uncategorized books-by-mail Public library systems cam caly film Hall of Fame 2012 Hall of Fame 2014 Historical Register Hall of Fame 2015 Bookmobiles DeForest Area Public Library Hall of Fame 2015 Soughton Public Library WLA 125 Delia Ovitz Publications Dorothea M. Krause WWI Library War Service WHCLIS Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians bookworm Pewaukee Public Library Hall of Fame 2018 Sarah Janice Kee Hall of Fame 2009 Oshkosh Public Library Superior Carnegie Libraries I Love Libraries Wisconsin Library Trustees and Friends Wisconsin Library Heritage Center buil State Law Library Library Buidlings Zona Gale background Robert Bocher Tower Hill Wisconsin Postcards Lutie Eugenia Stearns Postcards James Duane Doty National Bookmobile Day Campaign Centennial 21 library education Manitowoc Public Library Clarence Brown Lester Brown Deer Public Library Orrilla Blackshear Jerome P. Daniels Middleton Public Library Peter G. Hamon American Library Association Marjorie Sornson Malmberg Brown County Library William J. Wilson Lowell W. Wilson Elroy Public Library

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation Logo