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Harris County Women's Political Caucus Records

Identifier: 2011-001
This collection is comprised of one box and includes newsletters and correspondence from the Harris County Women’s Political Caucus and the Texas and National Women’s Political Caucuses, brochures, convention related documents and histories and bylaws of the organizations. It also includes a few issues of the Women’s Political Times, a publication of the National Women’s Political Caucus. Materials are arranged regionally, and then by topic within each regional series.


  • 1972-1983

Conditions Governing Access

Open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Special Collections owns the physical items in our collections, but copyright normally belongs to the creator of the materials or their heirs. The researcher has full responsibility for determining copyright status, obtaining permission to publish from copyright holders, and abiding by current copyright laws when publishing or displaying copies of Special Collections material in print or electronic form. For more information, consult the appropriate librarian. Reproduction decisions will be made by Special Collections staff on a case-by-case basis.


0.5 Linear Feet

Historical Information

The Harris County Women’s Political Caucus was founded in April of 1972 as one of the local affiliates of the Texas Women’s Political Caucus and National Women’s Political Caucus. The by-laws of the caucus defined its purpose as organizing Harris County women so that “they may unite in political action, especially against sexism, racism, institutional violence, and poverty.” (Bylaws, Folder 1, Box 1). Founding members of the Harris County Women’s Political Caucus included many well-known Harris County activists, business leaders, philanthropists and politicians such as Betty Barnes, Helen Cassidy, Peggy Hall, Ruth Milburn, and Poppy Northcut. Throughout the rest of the 1970s the Harris County Political Caucus was very successful in women’s rights advocacy. It collected data about discrimination against women, lobbied political leaders at the local and state level for pro-women legislation such as the ratification of the state and national Equal Rights Amendments, and supported the political campaigns of women seeking public office. The caucus also successfully lobbied for the creation of a Women’s Advocate for the city of Houston.

By 1981 the Harris County Political Caucus was one of the fastest growing affiliates of the National Women’s Political Caucus in the nation, having increased its membership by 260% (“A brief history” Harris County Women’s Political Caucus). The caucus continued its social and political activism in the 1980s, taking an active role in opposing anti-choice legislation in Texas and supporting the mayoral race of Kathy Whitmire.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection is a compilation of items taken from the Houston Area Women’s Center Collection (1996-005), the Josephine Harris Stewart Papers (2000-001), the Houston Area NOW and Other Feminist Activities Collection (2002-003) and a donation by Barbara Karkabi, September 1, 2010.

Related Materials

Houston Area Women’s Center Records

Guide to the Harris County Women's Political Caucus Records
Kristen Nicole McAlear
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Houston Libraries Special Collections Repository

University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
MD Anderson Library
4333 University Drive
Houston TX 77204-2000 USA