The first Women's Institute in Canada was created by Mrs. Adelaide Hunter Hoodless in Stoney Creek, Ontario, on February 19, 1897. The Women's Institute was created to unite rural women with the hopes that this would help women improve their homes and communities. The motto of the Women's Institute became, "a nation could not rise above the level of its homes." The group was to be non-partisan and non-sectarian to allow for maximum participation. The Women's Institute became one of the very few ways for rural women to meet and share ideas and problems with others. The Women's Institute spread throughout Canada and reached Manitoba in 1910, when Morris and Valley River, Manitoba, formed Women's Institute branches. The Women's Institute branches in Manitoba were known as Home Economics Societies until 1919, when they became branches of the Manitoba Women's Institute. The Home Economics Societies specialized in community service work. At first, the groups concentrated on home management and child care, and eventually they became involved with social and political issues. In addition to community work, the Women's Institute branches also invited many guest speakers to their meetings and promoted education and the dissemination of information to rural women on subjects such as canning, growing fruits and vegetables, dental hygiene and rural electrification. The Manitoba Women's Institute continues its work today.
This fonds was accessioned in 2002 by the McKee Archives. Prior custodial history is unknown.
Scope and Content
This collection has been artificially created and consists of miscellaneous newspaper and magazine clippings, handbooks, newsletters, photos and song sheets collected by various unknown Manitoba Women's Institute branches. Some newletters included in the collection are "Institute News" from the Manitoba Women's Institute, "National Farm Forum Guide", "Federated News" from the Federated Women's Institute of Canada and "The Country Woman" from Associated Women of the World. The newspaper clippings in the collection relate to Women's Institute branches around Manitoba and the rest of Canada.
Related women's institute collections in the McKee Archives include:
Manitoba Women's Institute; Minnedosa Women's Institute; Cordova Women's Institute; Clanwilliam Women's Institute; Rathwell Women's Institute; Strathclair Women's Institute; Crocus Women's Institute; Southwest A Region - Manitoba Women's Institute; Douglas Women's Institute