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Women's Studies Resources at Purdue University Archives and Special Collections: Women's Archives Overview

This guide is meant to help students, instructors, and researchers in the Women's Studies field find relevant collections or resources in Purdue's Archives.

Archives and Special Collections


Archival repositories contain one-of-a-kind materials such as diaries, letters, and photos that are preserved because these materials have long-term value for research. In Purdue University Archives Special Collections we collect the papers of faculty, staff, administrators, students, and alumni as well as records produced by university departments.

Susan Bulkeley Butler Women's Archives

The Susan Bulkeley Butler Women’s Archives was established in 2006 as a means of documenting the pioneering women who helped shape Purdue and Indiana history. The Purdue University Archives and Special Collections actively acquires the papers of women affiliated with Purdue or Indiana. Of special interest are the papers of women who have succeeded in largely male-dominated professions such as engineering, technology, science, and management. The Women’s Archives enables researchers and the Purdue community to rediscover the contributions of women by highlighting their achievements throughout history.

What is a Primary Source?

Primary Sources:  A primary source is a record of a person, event, or occurrence that was created by an eye-witness or participant's version of an event. Primary sources allow researchers to gain better insight into historical figures and events.

Types of Materials in the Women's Archives

Examples of the range of Women's Archives materials available for research include: Paulina Merritt's 19th-century correspondence supporting women's suffrage, Purdue Professor Emma McRae's 1913 retirment autograph book, Opal D. Stech's scrapbook documenting student life at Purdue in the 20s and 30s, Dorothy Stratton's WWII-era photographs of women Coast Guard Reservists (SPARS), Dean Helen Schleman's extensive collection of speech manuscripts from her tenure at Purdue, departmental records from the Women's Studies program, and records concerning the creation and educational activities of the student group S.H.E. -- Sisters for Health Education.

Contact Us


Phone: (765) 494-2839

Visit Us

The Archives are located on the fourth floor of the Humanities, Social Sciences and Education (HSSE) Library. 

We are open to the public Monday-Friday, 10:00 AM until 4:30 PM. Hours may be abbreviated during semester breaks and in the summertime.