Visiting Nurse Association of Muncie, Indiana

Mattie Flater Brown

The Visiting Nurse Association, a volunteer organization, was created in 1916 “for the benefit and assistance of those otherwise unable to secure skilled assistance in times of illness; to promote cleanliness and prevent sickness by the teaching of hygiene, sanitation and the science of domestic management.” At first the Association provided one nurse working from desk space in a corner of the Arcade Drug Store. When 223 visits were made to 66 patients within the first month, Visiting Nurses, 1932 an assistant nurse was added.

Visiting Nurses

Over the years, the Association supported a variety of health services. A 1935 reorganization focused the Association’s activities on public health nursing. In 1986 it reorganized again as BMH Homecare Services, Inc.

Delta Sigma Alpha Chapter

Delta Sigma Members. 1946

The Indiana Alpha Chapter of Delta Sigma Sorority was installed in 1910 with 14 charter members; an alumnae chapter was established in 1940. The Sorority's purposes, as stated in the national organization's constitution, were "to bring together female attendants and graduates of any high school, seminary, or other institution of learning equal in that by such Delta Sigma Members, 1946 association the fraternal, educational and social qualities of its members shall be improved" and "to carry on and Delta Sigma Members, 1946 encourage philanthropic work." Alpha Chapter sponsored dances, raffles, and other activities to raise funds for its many projects. Members also enjoyed social events, especially card parties.

General Federation of Colored Women`s Clubs 

Muncie F.C.W.C. Members, 1944

The Muncie City Federation of Colored Women’s Clubs, originally called the Elizabeth Carter Council, was founded in 1908. The Federation focused on service to the black community. Its motto was “Step by step we reach the heights, lifting as we climb.”

Women`s Franchise League of Muncie, Indiana

The Woman Citizen, 1912

The Woman’s Franchise League of Muncie was formed in the summer of 1912 with the avowed purpose of gaining women’s suffrage through the 19 th Amendment. The group was a member of the 8 th District of the Woman’s Franchise League of Indiana and was closely allied with the Indiana and General Federation of Women’s Clubs and with the National American Woman Suffrage Association. A list of the “First Members of Franchise League” comprises 179 names, including many influential local women. League meetings included speakers and discussions on “women’s” legislative topics like temperance, child labor, welfare, and education, as well as women’s suffrage.

Muncie-Delaware County Chapter of the National Organization for Women, Inc.

ERA, ca. 1980

The Muncie NOW chapter, the first chartered in Indiana, was organized in 1970 by Betty Newcomb and Virginia Jackson-Adams. NOW’s purpose is: “To take action to bring women into full participation in the mainstream of American society, NOW, exercising all the privileges and responsibilities thereof in truly equal partnership with men.” The Muncie NOW campaigned actively for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment and championed a variety of local and national women’s issues.

League of Women Voters

Brochure, 1983

The Muncie League of Women Voters received its charter in May 1958. The Muncie women’s Civic Council, an outgrowth of AAUW, was Women's Suffrage Amendment Stamp, 1970 instrumental in the League’s organization, and the League continued many of the Council’s voter-related projects. The League has sponsored voter education pamphlets and programs, candidates’ forums, and get-out-the-vote campaigns and has published the results of its studies of Delaware County library facilities (1975) and other local issues. The League is non-partisan, and membership is open to anyone who is an American citizen of voting age.