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Recorded Sound Section--Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division



Music Recordings
Drama and Literature Recordings
The Spoken Word
arrow graphicWomen in Congress
National Press Club
Vital History Cassettes
Brander Matthews Dramatic Museum Collection




Women in Congress
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Senator Maurine B. Neuberger (D-Ore.). Photograph by Marion S. Trikosko. Washington, D.C., August 7, 1962. U.S. News & World Report Collection, Prints and Photographs Division. LC-U9-8293.

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Researchers interested in women who have served in the U.S. Congress will find material scattered throughout many collections. Two collections in particular, however, though rather limited in scope, feature the activities, history, and thoughts of some of these women.

U. S. House of Representatives Floor Debates

Unedited audio and video of the U.S. House of Representatives floor debates from February 1979 through December 1985 offer a glimpse into congressional activity (after January 1986 the proceedings are on video). Congresswomen who served during this time, such as Geraldine Ferraro (b. 1935), Barbara Mikulski (b. 1936), and Mary Rose Oakar (b. 1940) are heard in action in these debates. Issues relating to women during this time include legislation on the use of funds for abortions, the Domestic Violence Prevention Program, and a bill to ensure that infant formulas contain proper nutrients. This collection is searchable in SONIC by date only, so it is necessary to consult the Congressional Record indexes (see General Collections section Congressional Documents) to locate subjects, names, and dates of interest.

Association of Former Members of Congress Oral History Collection

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Representative Martha Griffiths. Warren K. Leffler, photographer. 1970. Prints and Photographs Division. LC-U9-23069-20 (b&w film neg.).

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In the 1970s an organization called the Association of Former Members of Congress, Inc., began to record oral histories of individuals who served in Congress. The Association of Former Members of Congress Oral History Collection counts ten women among its subjects and includes not only the taped interviews but transcripts of the interviews, which reside in the Manuscript Division and on microform (Microfiche 82/100 MicRR). Martha Griffiths (b. 1912) (RYA 1064-1073), who was instrumental in getting the Equal Rights Amendment through Congress in 1972, and Edith Green (1910-1987) [picture] (RYA 1244-1251), who wrote the Equal Pay Act of 1963, and was called by Senator Mark Hatfield “the most powerful woman ever to serve in Congress,” were both interviewed for this project. This collection is accessible by name and date through SONIC.

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