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Discontinued Offices & Programs. Office Of The Dean Of Women (University Of Maine) Records

 Record Group
Identifier: UA RG 0007-012

Scope and Contents

The records mainly contain textual information created by the University of Maine Dean of Women office, but there are also photographs of women cleaning the dorms (vacuuming, cooking), dorms, women lounging in living area, women studying in rooms, portraits, and group photographs. The record group includes:

Various items regarding the administration of the Intercollegiate Association of Women Students, particularly the organization of the 1968 convention that was held on the University of Maine campus, including information on events, committees, activities, what the convention was, their schedule, rules and regulations and workshops.

General University of Maine information memorandums and brochures sent to the dean of women and items from committees the dean of women were members of including for organizing Maine Day.

Employment information for staff in the dean’s office, particularly assistant dean of women including: Elizabeth W. MacLaughlin, 1962, Nancy G. Whittemore, 1966, Doris E. Jones, 1968, Margaret T. Hatch, 1965 and Betty Rae Herrick, 1967.

Material on various University of Maine fraternities and sororities concerning membership and events, a history of the All Maine Women honors society, and meeting material and reports from the Women’s Student Government Association.

Information on female student dormitories which the Dean of Women were responsible for including: copies of various curfew policies, guidelines and procedures, statistics, meeting minutes, and histories of dorms, lists of dorm/residences heads, and background on the people the dorms were named in honor of and what they either contributed to the University or community. Other important and prominent subjects include: Freshman Orientation and Freshman Week, Head Resident information and People, the Inter-Fraternity SING event, Maine Day, Senior Watch Award, and Sophomore Eagles and Owls. There are also invitations to dances, parties and academic events that had an affiliation with the Dean of Women.

Information on University of Maine alumni in service during World War II.


  • 1895-1977
  • Majority of material found within 1950-1969

Conditions Governing Access

Kept at Fogler Library's offsite storage facility. One week's notice required for retrieval. Personal identifiable and legally protected information will be redacted before release.

Conditions Governing Use

Information on literary rights available in the Raymond H. Fogler Library Special Collections Department.

Biographical / Historical

The Office of Dean of Women reported to the Director of Student Services (and Registrar) and was later part of the Student Affairs Office. Reporting to the Dean of Women were head residents who supervised the student residents in the female dormitories. The Dean of Women were also responsible for contributing to the development of policies and programs affecting students and overseeing women student groups including sororities on campus.

Professor Caroline Colvin who was born October 8, 1863 in Webster, Indiana was appointed the first dean of women for the University of Maine in 1923. Colvin was also a history professor and chaired the department from 1906 to 1932 becoming one of the first women hired to be head of a major university department in the country. Under Colvin's tenure as dean of women the Women's Student Government was formed and the former gym was transformed into a women's dorm. Colvin pushed for other female dorms to be built including Colvin Hall which is named in her honor. Colvin was also involved in the women's suffrage movement. Colvin left as dean in 1927, but continued as a history professor at UMaine until 1932. Colvin received a number of honors including being named the first honorary All Maine Woman. Colvin died in 1953 at the age of 90.

Professor Achsa Mabell Bean who was born June 3, 1900 replaced Colvin as dean of women in 1927. Bean had been a professor of biology at the University of Maine since 1925. Bean left the position of dean of women in 1932.

Bean's successor was Edith G. Wilson who was born December 26, 1901 in Baltimore, MD. Wilson came to the University of Maine in 1931 as associate director of the Maine Christian Association. In 1933, Wilson was appointed dean of women, during her tenure the number of sororities on campus increased and the University of Maine were active in the Intercollegiate Association of Women Students. Wilson left the position of dean of women in 1962 and would go on to be assistant to the president for institutional research and clerk of the Board of Trustees. Wilson died on September 5, 1996 at the age of 94.

The majority of the records were created during the tenure of Professor Mary Stillman Zink who was born July 21, 1916, in Bridgeport, Conn. Zink attended Yale and Cornell universities. Zink joined the University of Maine faculty in 1960 as professor of education and would serve as associate dean of women from 1960 to 1962. In 1962, Zink was appointed both the director of the university testing service and dean of women. Zink was active in both the American Association of University Women, Phi Kappa Phu, Pi Lambda Theta, and the Intercollegiate Association of Women Students whose convocation the University of Maine hosted in 1968. Zink also served on the US Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services. Zink resigned as dean of women in 1971. Zink died on December 30, 2008 at the age of 92.


7 boxes

Language of Materials



Physically the records arranged by subject. Some file names were changed to make them more meaningful and to correct errors. Material was separated and divided into multiple sub-folders where necessary. Material was rehoused into archival quality storage.


Accruals from the Dean of Women are not anticipated because the office has been discontinued.

Related Materials

There are Faculty/Staff files for the deans of women that include: photographs, correspondence, clippings, and obituaries.


Formerly MS 542.

Processing Information

Processed by Matthew Revitt and student worker Abigayl Novak, August - September 2017, Raymond H. Fogler Library Special Collections Department. Processing involved a collection survey and intellectual arrangement into series and the creation of this finding aid. Material was rehoused in appropriate archival folders and the boxes and folders numbered and titled using information from ArchivesSpace.

University Of Maine. Office Of The Dean Of Women Records
Matthew Revitt
September 27, 2017
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Raymond H. Fogler Library University Archives Repository

5729 Raymond H. Fogler Library
University of Maine
Orono ME 04469-5729 United States