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Marcia Ellingson scrapbooks

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: RITArc-0579

Scope and Contents

The Marcia Ellingson scrapbooks contain 8 scrapbooks in individual cases. They span the years 1968-1975, starting at the end of her husband Mark Ellingson career as President of RIT and after he retired in 1969. The scrapbooks document the interests and activities of Marcia Ellingson.

The scrapbooks contain double sided pages with photographs, news articles, newspaper clippings, magazine articles, program schedules and event advertisements, primarily related to the Defense Advisory Committee On Women In The Services (DACOWITS). There are many personal letters written to Marcia on various subjects, usually thank you notes for her hospitality on a visit to Rochester from leading service men and women. Also included are pamphlets, greeting cards, postcards, and other small personal items. Most of the news articles were from the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle or other local newspapers.

Scrapbook 1 has news clippings from local papers and RIT publications. There are member lists, tenative hearing schedules, and notes for the Equal Opportunity in an Urban Society Subcommittee and Foreign Policy and National Security Subcommittee. Included also are color photographs of Marcia Ellingson and postcard souvenirs from trips she took. There are materials related to the 1968 Republican National Convention, such as the cover of a commemorative souvenir edition of Vistor: The Resort Magazine of South Florida, an intinerary, a news release, and correspondence. Included also are promotional materials, newsletters, and news clippings for Woman Power, a group of Rochester women voters who were concerned with inequality in national service laws. Marcia was the President of this organization. Also included is correspondence between Marcia Ellingson and Congress officials regarding Woman Power.

Scrapbook 2 contains materials related to President Mark Ellingon's retirement, such as his final Annual Report (1969), a program from his salute, and clippings from The Image and Reporter. There are also news clippings from local papers regarding the President's retirement.

Scrapbooks 7-9 cover the years 1968-1971 and contain materials related to Marcia Ellingson's founding of the Women Power organization and its activities. The collection consists of correspondence, news clippings, photographs, writings related to the Women Power organization, her involvement in the DACOWITS, and Margaret Mead’s visit to RIT. The collection also contains information on specific events, such as her appearance before the Republican and Democratic National Conventions sub-committees.

In 2018, a photo album was discovered which contained photographs of Marcia Ellingson and the Defense Advisory Committee on a trip in April 1971 to the Great Lakes Naval Base in Illinois. The album was dismantled and the photographs were sleeved and foldered and added to the 1971 scrapbook.


  • Creation: 1968-1975


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers.

Biographical / Historical

Mrs. Ellingson was the wife of the 5th president of RIT, Mark Ellingson (1936-1969) and the daughter of the 4th president of RIT, John Randall, (1922-1936). In addition to the organizations she founded at RIT, she was involved in Planned Parenthood and the National Organization for Women. She was an activist, but not an aggressive activist. “She gently pushed for women’s rights and dignity.”

Many of the materials in this collection are newspaper clippings and memorabilia of the organizations Mrs. Ellingson was influential in. They document her time as RIT’s “first lady” and how she was able to use that position to promote change. She was also a leader: at one point she organized a grass-roots organization called Women Power. During the Vietnam war she was concerned about the young men drafted shortly after leaving college. During the Vietnam war she was concerned about the young men drafted shortly after leaving college. She testified to sub-committees of both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions to promote draft reform and the addition of National Service for both men and women prior to entering college. She advocated for young people to perform 2 years of National Service or Military Service before entering college so their college careers would not be disrupted. In 1969 she was appointed by the Secretary of Defense to the Defense Advisory Committee On Women in the Services (DACOWITS) . She is described in her obituary from an RIT News Release (April 14, 1993) as “socially conscious”, but not outspoken. “She was forward thinking in that she sponsored people who were outspoken.” Mrs. Ellingson was also one of the founders of the RIT Women’s Club.


3 Linear Feet (8 scrapbook cases and one photo album)




The collection consists of eight scrapbooks contained in cases documenting the interests and activities of Marcia Ellingson between 1968 to 1975.


Scrapbooks are loosely arranged in chronological order.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Scrapbooks were donated to the RIT Archive Collections by the Ellingson family.

Processing Information

Finding aid created by Jody Sidlauskas in March 2015.

Marcia Ellingson scrapbooks
RIT Archives
Jody Sidlauskas
18 March 2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the RIT Archives Repository

Rochester NY 14623 USA