Greenwich Sentinel | April 17, 2023
Featured Image From left: Debra Mecky, Greenwich Historical Society’s Executive Director and CEO; Lynn Garelick, Greenwich League of Women Voters Historian; Sandy Waters, Greenwich League of Women Voters President; and Christopher Shields.
To ensure the contributions of LWV Greenwich members over the past century are documented and preserved, the LWV Greenwich has struck a partnership with Greenwich Historical Society to store documentary records so they are accessible to the public.
The donated trove spans a century, beginning with handwritten meeting minutes from October 1921, shortly after the passage of the 19th Amendment granting women the right to vote − an especially historical period with significant consequences for society. There are scrapbook albums, photos, videotapes, and information on past League presidents, including many larger-than-life personalities who helped to secure women’s voting rights in our country.
“LWV Greenwich’s historical record has been saved and passed down volunteer to volunteer for 100 years,” noted LWV Greenwich President, Sandy Waters. “This is a remarkable accomplishment, and a testament to the value our past leadership places upon our mission. But, our documents are always one volunteer away from loss. We are pleased that our partnership with the Historical Society will protect our historical past for the public to understand and to read for themselves.”
“Our partnership is especially gratifying as it enables us to continue to showcase and preserve the contributions of the League, which began with our exhibition ‘An Unfinished Revolution: The Woman’s Suffrage Centennial’ in 2021,” says Historical Society’s Executive Director and CEO Debra Mecky.
“Equally important, it helps further our mission for telling a fuller and more inclusive history of Greenwich and working collaboratively to build awareness of its historic assets and their preservation.”
According to past president Jara Burnett, “The LWV Greenwich has always strived to provide nonpartisan information, services, voter registrations, citizen education as well as make complicated policy issues clearer to the citizenry…[It has] produced nonpartisan Voters Guides for local, state, and federal elections, fact sheets for ballot questions, devised and financed the first several years of hazardous waste collections, conducted an extensive education program when the current voting machines were first introduced and completed studies of many local boards’ functions….”
“LWV Greenwich has a long history of studying local problems, proposing solutions, and working with town officials toward implementation,” said LWV Greenwich Historian Lynn Garelick. The Archive contains study-related materials about topics as diverse as the Ethics Policy for Town Employees; the Board of Estimate and Taxation; the Executive Branch of the Town of Greenwich; and the RTM, to name just a few.”
Records up to 2018 will be initially stored in the Historical Society’s Archives, after which deposits will be made periodically. This rotation ensures LWV Greenwich has recent documentation available for reference and that the historical assets are safely housed for posterity.
“Now that the LWV Greenwich records have found a permanent home at the Historical Society, the documentary history of this vital organization will be preserved and accessible to students, residents, and other researchers now and in the future,” said Christopher Shields, Greenwich Historical Society’s Curator of Library and Archives. “Once the records are fully processed, a finding aid will be available on our website. In the meantime, the materials are accessible for public viewing at the Historical Society by appointment during regular operating hours, Monday – Friday 9am – 4pm.”