TREASURES OF THE DURHAM COUNTY LIBRARY’S NORTH CAROLINA COLLECTION
Women’s book clubs and study groups have been an important feature of the Durham landscape for many years. The Durham County Library’s North Carolina Collection has records from several of these venerable groups. Today’s spotlight is on the Tuesday Morning Study Group, founded by Rosemary Fitts Funderberg and Delores Marvin in February 1962. This group has included among its members prominent women in the Durham and Chapel Hill communities including Elna Spaulding, Arthrell Sanders, Marian Thorne, Linda Kerr Norflett, Kenny Williams, Constance Watts and Josephine Clement.
The organization follows the academic-year calendar, meeting monthly for discussion and lunch from August to June. Members rotate the responsibilities of hosting the meeting, presenting discussion topics and serving as officers and committee chairs. Topics have ranged from examinations of art, literature and history to sociological explorations of the roles of education and the family to discussions of current events such as welfare and the 2008 elections. With the majority of the group’s membership being African-American, topics often center on the African-American cultural experience. The group also holds annual anniversary dinners, spring outings to cultural events and institutions in the Triangle and summer picnics.
The records include correspondence, administrative and financial documents and memorabilia collected from activities such as the anniversary dinner and outings to St. Augustine College’s Afro-American Festival and Durham’s Bennett Place State Historic Site. The bulk of the collection is a fairly comprehensive span of meeting minutes from 1977 almost to the present. The collection includes a small number of photographs.
Interested in the history of women’s organizations in Durham? Related to one of the women in this photo? Curious about Durham’s African-American history? Please visit the North Carolina Collection to learn more about this and many other topics related to Durham’s fascinating history.