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Philomathean Club collection

Identifier: MSS-255

Scope and Contents

The collection includes the Philomathean Club’s yearbooks from 1911 through 2004, each one of which lists club members, planned programs, and other club information for the year; meeting minute books from 1935 through 2009; the club’s constitution and by-laws; tributes to deceased members; news clippings, and correspondence. Also included is a sample of the cloth yearbook cover sewn by each member and the pattern and instructions for making the cover. Artifacts include a banner presented to 1974–75 club president, Betty Freeman and a wooden gavel. PSC 293 comprises 10 color snapshots of club Christmas parties.


  • Creation: 1911-2009

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University Libraries, Muncie, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Archives and Special Collections.

Historical Note

The Philomathean Club was organized on February 5, 1906, at the home of Mrs. Sarah Hufford on West Adams Street in Muncie. The Philomatheans ("seekers after knowledge") grew from the original five charter members to twelve and then to twenty. Club members chose as their motto "No excellence without great labor." According to an early constitution, the club`s object is "the promotion of higher mental and social culture of its members, and to encourage a liberal interchange of thought by means of paper and discussions." Over the decades, programs expanded from the club`s original focus on literature, art, music, and needlework to include a variety of speakers, travelogues, and discussions of current events. The club also supported a number of local charities and community projects with its annual Charity Day meeting. The Philomathean Club celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2006.


1.8 Cubic Feet (3 boxes )

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged in the following series:

Series 1: Philomathean Club records, 1922-2005

Series 2: Philomathean Club correspondence, 1960-2005

Series 3: Philomathean Club minutes, 1935-2005

Series 4: Philomathean Club yearbooks, 1911-2004

Series 5: Philomathean Club ephemera, 1974-1975, undated

Series 6: Philomathean Club photographs, 1978-2006

Custodial History

This collection was received by Archives and Special Collections as a donation by Betty Freeman on 2006/09/13. Additional material were donated by Betty Freeman on 2010/03/19.


No further additions are expected.

Related Archival Materials

Materials relating to this collection may be found in the following collections in Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University Libraries, Muncie IN:

SC.109: Philomathean Club records

Archives and Special Collections Women`s History Resources:

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2006/10/01 by Jane Gastineau. EAD finding aid created 2011/06/05 by Bethany Fiechter.

Philomathean Club collection
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Stoeckel Archives of Local History Repository

Alexander M. Bracken Library
2000 W. University Avenue
Muncie Indiana 47306 USA