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Manuscripts by Subject - Groups / Organizations - #10528

Title: Young Citizen's League (Bowman County ND) Chapter

Dates: 1946-1970

Collection Number:  MSS 10528

Quantity: 1.25 feet

Abstract: Consists of records and scrapbooks documenting the activities of the organization. Both include membership information, minutes, correspondence, convention programs and information, news clippings, printed material, ephemera, and photographs.

Provenance: The collection was donated to the State Historical Society of North Dakota by Lois J. Anderson, Bowman County Superintendent of Schools, on April 18, 1989.

Property rights: The State Historical Society of North Dakota owns the property rights to the collection.

Copyrights: Copyrights to materials in this collection remain with the donor, publisher, author, or author's heirs.  Researchers should consult the 1976 Copyright Act, Public Law 94-553, Title 17, U.S. Code and an archivist at this repository if clarification of copyright requirements is needed.

Access: This collection is open under the rules and regulations of the State Historical Society of North Dakota.

Citation:  Researchers are requested to cite the collection title, collection number, and the State Historical Society of North Dakota in all footnote and bibliographic references.
Related Collections:
MSS 10466 Young Citizens' League, Morton County Chapter       
MSS 10484 North Dakota Young Citizens’ League
MSS 10529 Slope County (ND) Young Citizens League

From MSS 10528 box 1, folder 1

The Bowman County Y.C.L. was organized during the 1946-1947 school year. There were 32 leagues with approximately 350 members. By 1950 there were 36 leagues with about 450 members.

The leagues were very active and held a County Convention every year. Due to the declining number of leagues (there were only two leagues in 1984-1985 and three in 1985-1986) Bowman County held their county conventions for these two years in conjunction with Slope County. County meetings rotated from town to town: Bowman, Scranton, Rhame, and Gascoyne. Speakers at the conventions included W. M. Wemett and Lorene York. Delegates were elected each year since 1947 to attend the state Convention in Bismarck. Some of these delegates were elected as State Y.C.L. officers the following year.

The first leagues were organized under the leadership of County Superintendent Alice G. Benson. Mrs. Benson continued in her position until 1970. She and succeeding County Superintendents Lois Jensen Anderson, Shirley Weeks, and Sharon Kay Stiller also served on the Board of Directors.

The school leagues found many ways to show their skills as good citizens. They purchased or helped to purchase equipment (slides, phonographs and records, musical instruments, and playground equipment) for their schools. Funds were donated to worthy organizations such as the March of Dimes and the Easter Seals Association. The elderly at the Sunset Nursing Home in Bowman were visited and brought treats. Money for such projects was earned through car washes, candy and food sales, carnivals, craft sales, and raffles. Some of the funds were also used by the leaguers for trips to Bismarck, Medora, the Peace Gardens, The Black Hi1ls, and Ekalaka (MT). Field trips increased the young citizens’ knowledge of their state and local area.

Other projects included studies of conservation and ecology, school newspapers, and U.S. bicentennial projects. In 1950 a County Chorus was organized. Earl Duane Erickson was director and James McGee was accompanist. This became an integral part of the County Y.C.L.  In 1955 Bowman County received the National Award for Very Superior Citizenship Training. As a symbol of this recognition, the county group received a set of Y.C.L. Regalia.

Bowman County Y.C.L. became a Charter Member of the Theodore Roosevelt National Memorial Park and Badlands Association in 1958. One of the leagues took part in a local theater group presentation of "Annie, Get Your Gun" in recent years.

County Conventions always consisted of the usual business meeting and a program provided by the leagues. Speakers such as local game wardens and extension personnel have also been invited to some meetings and been an added interest as they showed slides or films. In the early years of the Y.C.L., a banquet was held at the close of the Convention, which was served by a local ladies' group.


Box 1:
1 Organizational history and records, 1946-1969
2 Records, 1970-1973
3 Records, 1974-1984

Organizational history, 1947-1956
Organizational history, 1957-1961
Organizational history, 1962-1970

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