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Ossoli Circle Records

Identifier: MS-3822

  • Staff Only

This collection contains histories, reports, meeting minutes, and ephemera of the Ossoli Circle, a women’s club located in Knoxville, Tennessee, from 1903-2018. This collection is arranged into four series. The first series, Meeting Minutes, includes the minutes from meetings between 1903-1906, as well as printed copies of the meeting minutes. The second series, Reports, includes the Historian's Annual Reports from 1986-1997 as well as the Historian's Report from 1999-2000. The third series, Histories, Pictorial Directories, and Yearbooks includes written histories for 1975, 1997-1998, and 2000-2023. (Ossoli Circle Yearbooks from 1889-1985 can be found in Special Collections Rare Books [HQ1905.K7 O84]). It also includes pictorial directories of the club for 1996-1997, and club yearbooks from 1986 to 2019. The fourth series, Ephemera, includes a program from the 100th Anniversary of the Ossoli Circle, including the dates of centennial events, as well as a copy of the Ossoli Circular from 1926.


  • 1903-2023

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.


1.75 Linear Feet (3 boxes - 1 full box, 1 half box, 1 flat box)


This collection contains histories, reports, meeting minutes, and ephemera of the Ossoli Circle, a women’s club located in Knoxville, Tennessee, from 1903-2023.

Biographical/Historical Note

The Ossoli Circle was founded in 1885 as a literary women’s club in Knoxville, Tennessee. It is considered the first federated women’s club in the South, and it has played an important role in championing economic and educational opportunities for women in the state. The organization was founded by Lizzie Crozier French (1851-1926), one of the biggest supporters of voting rights for women in Tennessee. The club’s first official meeting was held on November 20, 1885, with only 12 women attending. They decided to name the club after Margaret Fuller Ossoli (1810-1850), a famous feminist and journalist. Some of the club's early members included Mary Boyce Temple (1856-1929), Angie Warren Perkins (1858-1921), Faith Floyd McAdoo (1832-1913), and Annie Booth McKinney (1855-1926). In the 1890s, the group moved to focusing on women’s educational opportunities. The efforts of the Ossoli Circle helped bring about the admittance of women at the University of Tennessee as well as the creation of a state vocational school for girls. The Ossoli Circle remains active in the Knoxville community.

Previous Citation

Material in this collection was previously listed under MS.0091, MS.0854, MS.2517, MS.2522, MS.2983, MS.3039, and MS.3208. All parts of the previous collections have been listed in this collection.

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA