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Guide to the Margaret Taylor Smith Papers, 1918-2010 and undated, bulk 1980-2008

Abstract

A native of Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, Margaret Taylor Smith attended Duke University from 1943-1947. After graduating with a degree in sociology, Smith and her husband relocated to Birmingham, Michigan. Smith raised four children while taking an active part in her community through volunteer work and leadership. Smith's work as a research associate studying family life became the basis for a 1987 book, Mother, I Have Something to Tell You. Smith served as the chair of the Board of Trustees of the Kresge Foundation, a national organization that awards grants to support non-profit organizations. In addition, Smith continues her commitment to Duke University by holding leadership positions on multiple boards, by acting as a founding member and chair of the Council on Women's Studies, and by enabling the creation of the Sarah W. and George N. Taylor Endowment Fund for women's leadership and the Margaret Taylor Smith Endowed Directorship for Women's Studies.

The Margaret Taylor Smith Papers contain materials dating from 1918 to 2010, with the bulk dating between 1980 and 2008. The collection documents Smith's voluntarism, leadership, and philanthropic activities at Duke University, especially in women's studies; her sociological research on American families, specifically relationships between mothers and children, that resulted in the publication of a book, Mother I Have Something To Tell You; her social and family life; and her professional activities and voluntarism, particularly at the Kresge Foundation. The collection is organized into five series: Duke University, Mother, I Have Something To Tell You, Personal Papers, Professional Voluntarism, and Additions.

Descriptive Summary

Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Creator
Smith, Margaret Taylor
Title
Margaret Taylor Smith papers 1918-2010 and undated bulk 1980-2008
Language of Material
English
Extent
19.85 Linear Feet, 24,761 Items
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Collection Overview

The Margaret Taylor Smith Papers contain materials dating from 1918 to 2010, with the bulk dating between 1980 and 2008. The collection documents Smith's voluntarism, leadership, and philanthropic activities at Duke University, especially in women's studies; her sociological research that resulted in the publication of a book; her social and family life; and her professional activities and voluntarism, particularly at the Kresge Foundation. Smith's original folder titles were retained. Smith, an avid note taker, often recorded information on the exterior of folders and manila envelopes. These folders were retained and appear in the collection. The collection is organized into five series: Duke University, Mother, I Have Something To Tell You, Personal Papers, Professional Voluntarism, and Additions.

The Duke University Series comprises materials related to Smith's leadership and professional voluntarism at the university, including correspondence, event planning notes, meeting minutes, endowment information, and speeches.

The Mother, I Have Something To Tell You Series documents the publication of the 1987 book, authored by Jo Brans, based on Smith's sociological research that describes how mothers deal with children who display untraditional behavior. Specifically, Smith researched American families whose children challenged social and sexual mores during the 1960s and 1970s. The series contains correspondence, drafts, speeches, and Smith's research related to the book, including the mothers' subject files, which typically contain written transcripts of Smith's interviews with the women, both with and without Smith's notes, questionnaires and sociological data, and audiocassette recordings of the interviews. Original audio recordings are closed to research. Use copies need to be created before contents can be accessed.

Materials related to Smith's social and family life are located in the Personal Papers Series, which primarily comprises correspondence with family, friends, and some professional associates, but also includes photographs, newspaper clippings, ephemera from Smith's days as an undergraduate at Duke University, and her father's World War I diary.

The Professional Voluntarism Series contains materials documenting Smith's professional activities, including awards, correspondence, speaking engagements, subject files, voluntarism, and philanthropy. The series particularly highlights Smith's work as the chair of the Board of Trustees of the Kresge Foundation, a national organization that awards grants to support non-profit organizations; her volunteer work with the Junior League; and her interest in ethics and ethical dilemmas.

Later Additions have not been processed. Accession (2010-0066) contains email correspondence. Accession (2010-0135) includes addition research materials, correspondence, proposals, and other miscellaneous notes. Accession (2010-0164) includes correspondence regarding the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture; the Duke University Women's Studies department; Smith's Class of 1947 and their reunions; and other miscellaneous materials and notes.

Acquired as part of the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

Also, audio and video recordings in this collection are not immediately accessible, because they require further processing before use.

In addition, all or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

As a highly involved Duke undergraduate, Smith served as president of Woman's College student government while excelling in scholarship (Phi Beta Kappa), athletics (Delta Phi Rho Alpha), and in leadership (Phi Kappa Delta, White Duchy, Pi Beta Phi). After earning a degree in Sociology in 1947, Smith continued her commitment to the university through leadership, volunteering, and philanthropy. Smith served on the Executive Committee for Duke's Capital Campaign Fund drive, on the Board of Directors of the General Alumni Association, as a member and chair of Trinity College's Board of Visitors, and on the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of Duke's National Council. Particularly interested in women's issues, Smith was a founding member and chair of the Council on Women's Studies and served as president of the Women's Alumnae Association. Smith's generosity enabled the creation of the Sarah W. and George N. Taylor Endowment Fund for women's leadership and the Margaret Taylor Smith Endowed Directorship for Women's Studies. The series also documents the relationship between Smith and Jean O'Barr, who established the Women's Studies Program. Personal correspondence between the two women appears in the Personal Papers Series. The alphabetically arranged Duke University Series comprises materials related to Smith's leadership and professional voluntarism at the university, including correspondence, event planning notes, meeting minutes, endowment information, and speeches. Materials documenting Smith's experiences as an undergraduate at Duke and her social activities related to the university can be found in the Personal Papers Series.

Alumni Association Distinguished Alumni Award, 1996 (2 folders)
Box 1
Awards, Duke Heritage Society and Half Century Club, 1991; 1998
Box 1
Board of Visitors capital campaign, 1990-2000 (4 folders)
Box 1
Council on Women's Studies, 1989-1992 (2 folders)
Box 1
Dinner to honor Mary Grace Wilson, 1970
Box 2
Elly Elliott honorary degree, 2002 May 10
Box 2
Evaluation of women's studies program, 1990
Box 2
Ford Foundation, 1987-1988
Box 2
Ford Motor Company and Women's Studies correspondence/outcomes, 1990-1991 (4 folders)
Box 2
Founder's Day, Duke University Chapel, 2001 October 4 (2 folders)
Box 2
Fundraising chapter and manuscript of Jean O'Barr, 1992
Box 2
Giving to Duke, 1986-1987
Box 3
Gratitude for leadership of Council on Women's Studies, 1991 April 15
Box 3
Happer, Carolyn, Duke interview, 2003
Box 3
Hillsdale College inauguration, 2000
Box 3
Jenkins, Kimberly correspondence, 2002
Box 3
Kellogg grant, 1993
Box 3
Margaret Taylor Smith endowed directorship, 1996-1998 (5 folders)
Box 3
Miscellaneous, 2000
Box 3
O'Barr honorary degree, Indiana University, 2002 May 4
Box 4
Sarah W. and George N. Taylor Endowment Fund, 1991-1995
Box 4
Trinity Board of Visitors, last meeting, 2000 April
Box 4
Trinity Board of Visitors lists, 1988-1995
Box 4
What Makes Sense is That Things Don't Make Sense: Life's Continuing Dilemma, 1987 November 12
Box 4
Woman's College at Duke celebration, 2002 November 8-10 (3 folders)
Box 4
Women and Power, correspondence, 2001
Box 4
Women Imagine Change, 2000 May 4-5
Box 4
The Women's Center, 2004
Box 4
The Women's Center, Donna Lisker, 2003
Box 4
Women's health care, 1993
Box 5
Women's initiative correspondence, 2003
Box 5
Women's Studies, 1986-2008 (folders 1-6 of 9)
Box 5
Women's Studies, 1986-2008 (folders 7-9 of 9)
Box 6
Women's Studies, correspondence, brochures, and programs, 2001-2003 (2 folders)
Box 6
Women's Studies Council leadership, 2002 (2 folders)
Box 6
Women's Studies external review, 1997
Box 7
Women's Studies fundraising, 1990
Box 7

In the early 1980s, Smith worked as a research associate at the Merrill-Palmer Institute of Wayne State University, studying family life and early childhood development. Smith collaborated with writer Jo Brans to publish the book Mother, I Have Something To Tell You in 1987. Based on interviews with mothers in Michigan, the book describes how parents deal with children who display untraditional behavior. Specifically, Smith researched families whose children challenged social and sexual mores during the 1960s and 1970s. The series contains correspondence, drafts, speeches, and Smith's sociological research related to the book, in addition to files on each mother, who appeared in the book under aliases provided by Brans. In keeping with the anonymity provided by the book, file names reflect aliases rather than real names. The mothers' subject files include written transcripts of Smith's interviews with the women, both with and without Smith's notes, questionnaires and sociological data, and audiocassette recordings of the interviews. Arrangement is alphabetical, followed by a large group of research files organized into rough book chapters by Smith.

Original audio recordings are closed to research. Use copies need to be created before contents can be accessed.

Articles in support of project, 1983-1985
Box 7
Author questionnaire, 1986
Box 7
Biographical data, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 7
Book project notes, 1981-1982
Box 7
Book proposal, 1984
Box 7
Book proposal and Jo Brans notes, undated
Box 8
Book tour and Doubleday correspondence, 1987
Box 8
Contract information, 1984-1987
Box 8
Correspondence, 1981-1987; 2007 (3 folders)
Box 8
Draft, Chapter 1, 1985 April 11
Box 8
Ego level assignments, 1983
Box 8
File from Jo Brans, 1984-1987 and undated
Box 8
Focal child notes, undated
Box 8
Forms and summaries, 1981-1983
Box 9
Initial correspondence with Jo Brans, 1984
Box 9
Letters to mothers and article, 1985-1986
Box 9
Margaret Taylor Smith story transcription, 1981
Box 9
Master list, 1986-1987
Box 9
My mothers, 1982 and undated
Box 9
Packet for Jo, 1985
Box 9
Project idea development, undated
Box 9
Project origins, 1981 and undated (2 folders)
Box 9
Publicity and correspondence, 1987-1997 (2 folders)
Box 9
Questionnaire for mother, undated
Box 9
Rough draft, process, and outline, 1983-1984
Box 9
Rough drafts, thesis, 1983-1984
Box 10
Sentence completion tests, undated
Box 10
Speaking engagements, 1987-1988
Box 10
Speaking engagements, Good Day Show videocassette, Boston, 1987 February 2

[Original recordings are closed to research. Use copies need to be created before contents can be accessed.]

Box 10
Speaking engagements, WBZ radio show audiocassette, Boston, 1987 January 20

[Original recordings are closed to research. Use copies need to be created before contents can be accessed.]

Box 10
Subject 10, Rosemary, 1981-1982 (4 folders)
Box 10
Subject 11, Janet, 1982 (folders 1-2 of 4)
Box 10
Subject 11, Janet, 1982 (folders 3-4 of 4)
Box 11
Subject 12, Carolyn, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 11
Subject 13, Betty, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 11
Subject 14, Ruthanne, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 11
Subject 15, Carol, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 12
Subject 16, Lois, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 12
Subject 17, Bonnie, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 12
Subject 18, Dorothy, 1982-1983 (folders 1-2 of 4)
Box 12
Subject 18, Dorothy, 1982-1983 (folders 3-4 of 4)
Box 13
Subject 19, Jean, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 13
Subject 20, Kate, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 13
Subject 21, Myra, 1982-1983; 1992 (folders 1-2 of 4)
Box 13
Subject 21, Myra, 1982-1983; 1992 (folders 3-4 of 4)
Box 14
Subject 22, Rebecca, 1983 (4 folders)
Box 14
Subject 23, Suzanne, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 14
Subject 24, Patricia, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 14
Subject 25, Judy, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 15
Subject 26, Marilyn, 1982 (3 folders)
Box 15
Subject 27, Margot, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 15
Subject 28, Susan, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 15
Subject 29, Patty, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 16
Subject 30, Marian, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 16
Subject 31, Margaret, 1983 (4 folders)
Box 16
Subject 32, Ann, 1982-1983 (folders 1-3 of 4)
Box 16
Subject 32, Ann, 1982-1983 (folder 4 of 4)
Box 17
Subject 33, Sharon, 1982 (4 folders)
Box 17
Subject 34, Ellen, 1983 (4 folders)
Box 17
Subject 35, Lucy, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 17
Subject 36, Karen, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 18
Subject 37, Marie, 1982-1983 (4 folders)
Box 18
Subject 38, Martha, 1983 (4 folders)
Box 18
Subject 39, Elizabeth, 1983 (folders 1-3 of 4)
Box 18
Subject 39, Elizabeth, 1983 (folder 4 of 4)
Box 19
Subject 41, Gloria, 1983 (4 folders)
Box 19
Subject 42, Joy, 1983 (4 folders)
Box 19
Talk, with various dilemmas and several conclusions, undated
Box 19
Thoughts on readings, 1985
Box 19
Worksheets used for editing, undated
Box 19
Other materials
Box 20-21

Contains materials documenting Smith's social and family life, primarily through correspondence with family, friends, and some professional associates, but also through photographs, newspaper clippings, ephemera from Smith's days as an undergraduate at Duke University, and her father's World War I diary. Materials related to Smith's volunteer and philanthropic activities at Duke University are located in the Duke University Series. The Personal Papers Series is arranged alphabetically by folder title.

50th class reunion (Duke), 1997 Sept. (2 folders)
Box 22
60th high school reunion, Roanoke Rapids, 2003 Oct.
Box 22
Clippings and notices, 1942-1946
Box 22
Correspondence, 1994-2000 July (7 folders)
Box 22
Correspondence, 2000 July-2002 Dec. (7 folders)
Box 23
Correspondence, 2003 Jan.-2004 Sept. (7 folders)
Box 24
Correspondence, 2004 Sept.-2006 July (7 folders)
Box 25
Correspondence, 2006 Aug.-2008 January (3 folders)
Box 26
Clippings from Mary Lou Connolly's scrapbook, 1956-1966 and undated
Box 26
Cramer, Laura house party, Hilton Head Island, 2004 Oct.
Box 26
Cuba, Duke alumni trip, 2003 February
Box 26
Duke clippings, 1940s
Box 26
Duke correspondence, 1943-1947
Box 26
Duke memories, 1940s (folders 1-2 of 4)
Box 26
Duke memories, 1940s (folders 3-4 of 4)
Box 27
Engagement and wedding, 1947
Box 27
Journal, 1994 Apr.-Aug.
Box 27
Memories...Conversations with Sarah Waller Taylor and Bertie Waller Brown, 1981 Oct.
Box 27
Mother, 1984-1985
Box 27
My friends, oral conversations, 50th reunion, 1992; 1997
Box 27
Christening, 2003
Box 27
Digital prints, 2003
Box 27
Duke photographs, 1940s; 1960s
Box 27
Miscellaneous, undated
Box 27
Montreat, North Carolina and T. J.'s, 2003 May
Box 27
My desk, undated
Box 27
Pictures from refrigerator door, 2002-2003
Box 27
San Miguel, Roanoke Rapids, and Cape Hatteras, 2003
Box 27
Sicily, 2001 Oct.-Nov.
Box 27
Picnic, Orchard Lake Country Club, 1984 June 3 (2 folders)
Box 28
Sid's 50th, 1999
Box 28
Taylor genealogy, undated
Box 28
Taylor, Sergeant George N. diary, 1918 May-1919 Mar.
Box 28

Series houses materials documenting Smith's professional activities, including awards, correspondence, speaking engagements, subject files, voluntarism, and philanthropy. The items give particular emphasis to Smith's work as the chair of the Board of Trustees of the Kresge Foundation, a national organization that awards grants to support non-profit organizations; her volunteer work with the Junior League; and her interest in ethics and ethical dilemmas. Arranged alphabetically by folder title.

[Original recordings are closed to research. Use copies need to be created before contents can be accessed.]

Athena Award, 1998 Mar. (2 folders)

Includes videocassette of award dinner. Original recordings are closed to research. Use copies need to be created before contents can be accessed.

Box 28
Awards and memorial garden correspondence, 1996, 1999, 2007
Box 28
Correspondence and other writings, 1994-2008 (2 folders)
Box 28
Council of Michigan Foundations, 1992-1997
Box 28
Detroit Medical Center corporate responsibility, 1997-1999
Box 29
Detroit Medical Center, Hutzel Hospital, 1984-1997
Box 29
Dilemmas, 1986-1988 and undated
Box 29
The Economic Impact of Women in Philanthropy, 1994 Oct. 20 (3 folders)
Box 29
Ethics and dilemmas, 1987-1988 and undated
Box 29
Gender equity reports, 1988-1994 (folders 1-3 of 4)
Box 29
Gender equity reports, 1988-1994 (folder 4 of 4)
Box 30
Health care talk, 1993 Feb. 12
Box 30
Heart of Gold Award, 1985-1987 (2 folders)
Box 30
Human development, 1986-1987 and undated
Box 30
Human risk and solitude, 1987 and undated
Box 30
Junior League Community Advisory Committee, 1998-2000 (2 folders)
Box 30
Junior League, 1987-1989 and undated
Box 30
Junior League presidency, 1962-1964
Box 30
Agendas and correspondence, 1993-1994
Box 30
Annual reports, 1994-1998 (2 folders)
Box 30
Correspondence and remarks, 1990-1995; 2005
Box 31
Council of Michigan Foundations, 1993-1997
Box 31
Crain's Detroit Business, Detroit's Most Influential Women, 1997-1998
Box 31
New Direction, undated
Box 31
Retirement, 1997 June
Box 31
Trustee-emeriti dinner, 1996 May 16
Box 31
Merrill-Palmer, 1974-1978; 1987
Box 31
Merrill-Palmer directories, 1978; 1980
Box 31
Panel - Class, gender, and race in the non-profit sector, 1996 Jan. 16
Box 31
Parenting and child care, 1986-1988 and undated
Box 31
Philanthropy, 1998
Box 31
Quotes, 1986-1987 and undated
Box 31
Remarks about the Kresge Foundation, P.E.O. meeting, 1997 Apr. 7
Box 31
Speaking engagements, 1986-1988
Box 31
Speeches and remarks, 1987-1988 and undated
Box 32
Talks and information - Legal and ethical responsibilities of trustees and others, 1995-1996
Box 32
Volunteering, Junior League, 1971 and undated
Box 32
Volunteerism, 1986-1990 (2 folders)
Box 32
Volunteerism and philanthropy, 1995-1996
Box 32
Wayne State University School of Medicine commencement luncheon, Distinguished Service Award, 1999 June 8
Box 32
Women of Achievement and Courage Award, 1999 (2 folders)
Box 32
Women and philanthropy, 1989-1996 (2 folders)
Box 32
Women working and volunteering, 1980-1983
Box 32
Women's Educational Equity Act study on gifted women, 1992
Box 32
Women's special connection and communication, 1987 and undated
Box 32
Projects and correspondence, 1983-1985, 2010

Chiefly correspondence (Accession 2010-0135) from 1981-1985 regarding the Fox-Smith Project, conducted at Wayne State University, that studied the pain and stess of women associated with the non-traditional behavior of children. Also includes email correspondence (Accession 2010-0066) from 2010.

Box 33
Letters to benefactors regarding the publication of research, 1985
Box 33
Proposal for book publisher, 1981-1982

Correspondence and outlines for proposed research and writing projects; outlines for "steps of interviewing."

Box 33
Research and correspondence, 1982-1983 (2 folders)

Includes grant proposals, research proposals, correspondence, and notes on research.

Box 33
Pat Johnson's research, 1983
Box 33
Transcriptions of interviews, 1983
Box 33
Profiles for Focal Children, 1983
Box 33
Accession 2010-0066, email correspondence, 2010
Box 33

Acc. (2010-0164) (100 items, 0.2 lin. ft.; dated 1970-2009) includes correspondence regarding the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture; the Duke University Women's Studies department; Smith's Class of 1947 and their reunions; and other miscellaneous materials and notes.

Duke Reunions Correspondence (Class of 1947), 1970-1997 (2 folders)
Box 34
Detroit Medical Center notes, 1997
Box 34
Women's Health and Wellness Weekend, Duke University, October 2007
Box 34
General correspondence, 2008-2009
Box 34
Women's Studies Department, Duke University (correspondence, notes, newsletters), 2008-2009 (2 folders)
Box 34
Jean O'Barr (correspondence, retirement), 2009
Box 34
What Does It Mean to be an Educated Women?, Sallie Bingham Center symposium, (correspondence, printed materials, plans), 2009
Box 34

Additional material from Margaret Taylor Smith's interviews, research, and correspondence about Mother, I Have Something to Tell You. Also includes copies of some of Smith's talks.

3 cassette tapes
Box 35
Agreements and other materials, 1982-1983
Box 35
Correspondence re: Henry A. Murray Research Center, data, publication, 1983-1984
Box 35
Talks, 1993-2000
(2 folders)
Box 35

Historical Note

A native of Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, Margaret Taylor Smith attended Duke University from 1943-1947. After graduating with a degree in Sociology, Smith and her husband relocated to Birmingham, Michigan. Smith raised four children while taking an active part in her community through volunteer work and leadership. Smith was instrumental in founding the Legal Aid Society to provide legal assistance for low income citizens, and New Horizons, Inc. to provide service to individuals with disabilities. She held leadership roles in the Girl Scouts and the Junior League and participated in organizations designed to support children. Smith worked as a research associate at the Merrill-Palmer Institute of Wayne State University, studying family life and early childhood development. Her research became the basis for a 1987 book, Mother, I Have Something to Tell You. Smith served as the chair of the Board of Trustees of the Kresge Foundation, a national organization that awards grants to support non-profit organizations. In addition, Smith continues her commitment to Duke University by holding leadership positions on multiple boards, by acting as a founding member and chair of the Council on Women's Studies, and by enabling the creation of the Sarah W. and George N. Taylor Endowment Fund for women's leadership and the Margaret Taylor Smith Endowed Directorship for Women's Studies.

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Margaret Taylor Smith Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University

Provenance

The Margaret Taylor Smith Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 2008, 2010.

Processing Information

Processed by Lindsay Matson, April 2009

Encoded by Lindsay Matson, May 2009

Updated by Meghan Lyon, July 2010

Updated by Alice Poffinberger, August 2010

Accessions 2008-0237, 2010-0066, and 2010-0135 are described in this finding aid.

Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.