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A Guide to the May Mann Jennings Papers

Finding aid prepared by Dept. Staff

Digitization funded with the generous support of the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

University of Florida Smathers Libraries - Special and Area Studies Collections
December 2011


Descriptive Summary

Creator: Jennings, May Mann, 1872-1963
Title: May Mann Jennings Papers
Dates: 1889-1963
Abstract: Correspondence and miscellaneous materials of May Mann Jennings, a political and environmental activist.
Extent: 9 Linear feet. 25 boxes.
Identification: MS 57
Language(s): English
Online Content Items from this collection have been digitized and are available online in the UF Digital Collections. For more information please see the note below.

Biographical/Historical Note

May Mann Jennings was a leading member of the women's club movement and an influential advocate for social reform and civic causes in Florida and nationwide. Born in New Jersey in 1872, she moved with her family to Crystal River, Florida, in 1874. She was educated at St. Joseph's Convent in St. Augustine, and lived primarily in Jacksonville throughout her life. No stranger to politics, her father was Florida State Senator Austin Shuey Mann and she married future Governor William Sherman Jennings in 1891. During their years in the Governor's mansion, she became known as the "Mother of Forestry" for her advocacy efforts on behalf of the state Board of Forestry. Her interests varied widely and she championed numerous causes related to the Seminole Indians, women's rights and suffrage, conservation, beautification efforts, child welfare, public health, education, and Democratic politics.

A prominent leader in the women's club movement, she served as president of the Florida Federation of Women's Clubs from 1914-1917, and as both Florida director and vice president of the General Federation of Women's Clubs (1918-1920). She also held several important leadership positions with social club and civic organizations throughout Florida, including numerous beautification committees and the state Audubon Society. During her tenure as president of the Florida Federation of Women's Clubs, she spearheaded the effort to have the Royal Palm State Park established in 1915, thereby preserving a portion of the Everglades for public use. Throughout the 1920s and 1930s she continued to oversee and advocate for the Royal Palm Park on behalf of the Federation. She was appointed to the Everglades National Park Commission in the late 1930s and pushed for the creation of a national Everglades Park. She died April 24, 1963.


Scope and Content

The May Mann Jennings Papers (1889-1963) document her activities related to the Federation of Women's Clubs, the Royal Palm State Park, the Everglades, and her relationship with her husband, Governor William Sherman Jennings. Other topics include women's rights and suffrage, the Seminole Indians, beautification efforts, child welfare, public health, education, and Democratic politics. The collection consists of correspondence, photographs, news clippings, speeches, meeting minutes and biographical information. The personal correspondence includes letters to and from her husband and her son, Sherman Bryan Jennings.


Access or Use Restrictions

Access

The collection is open for research.


Related or Separated Material

The University of Florida also holds the papers of May Mann Jennings' father, State Senator Austin Shuey Mann, and her husband, Governor William Sherman Jennings.


Administrative Information

Alternate Form of Material

Items in the May Mann Jennings collection have been digitized for America's Swamp: The Historical Everglades project, which is generously supported by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). In addition to the links that are provided throughout this guide to the collection, all materials can be browsed at the May Mann Jennings page in the University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC). Please note the majority of items in this collection are not described individually. Therefore, it is not possible to search for a specific item (e.g., a letter written by a particular author). Instead, the digital collection is best accessed by selecting a folder title and browsing the images contained in each folder.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], May Mann Jennings Papers, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Mrs. Jennings, Dorothy Jennings Sandridge, and other family members.


Contents List

Correspondence


Box
1 Correspondence. 1889-1900
1 Correspondence. 1901 January-July
1 Correspondence. 1901 August-December
1 Correspondence. 1902 January-May
1 Correspondence. 1902 June-December
1 Correspondence (Invitations). 1901-1902
2 Correspondence. 1903 January-May
2 Correspondence. 1903 June-August
2 Correspondence. 1903 September-December
2 Correspondence. 1904
3 Correspondence. 1905-1908
3 Correspondence. 1909
3 Correspondence. 1910-1912
3 Correspondence. 1913 January-April
3 Correspondence. 1913 May-July
4 Correspondence. 1913 August-December
4 Correspondence. 1914 January-March
4 Correspondence. 1914 April-August
4 Correspondence. 1914 September
4 Correspondence. 1914 October
5 Correspondence. 1914 November
5 Correspondence. 1914 December
5 Correspondence. 1915 January
5 Correspondence. 1915 February
6 Correspondence. 1915 March
6 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1915 April
6 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1915 April
6 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1915 May
6 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1915 May
6 Correspondence. 1915 June
7 Correspondence. 1915 July
7 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1915 August
7 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1915 August
7 Correspondence. 1915 September
7 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1915 October
8 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1915 October
8 Correspondence. 1915 November
8 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1915 December
8 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1915 December
8 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1916 January
9 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1916 January
9 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1916 February
9 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1916 February
9 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1916 March
9 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1916 March
9 Correspondence. 1916 April-May
10 Correspondence. 1916 June-July
10 Correspondence. 1916 August-October
10 Correspondence. 1916 November-December
10 Correspondence. 1917 January-February
10 Correspondence. 1917 March-April
10 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1917 May
11 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1917 May
11 Correspondence. 1917 June
11 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1917 July
11 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1917 July
11 Correspondence. 1917 August
11 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1917 September
12 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1917 September
12 Correspondence. 1917 October
12 Correspondence. 1917 November
12 Correspondence. 1917 December
12 Correspondence. 1918 January
12 Correspondence. 1918 February
13 Correspondence. 1918 March
13 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1918 April
13 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1918 April
13 Correspondence. 1918 May
13 Correspondence. 1918 June
14 Correspondence. 1918 July
14 Correspondence. 1918 August
14 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1918 September
14 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1918 September
14 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1918 October
14 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1918 October
15 Correspondence. 1918 November
15 Correspondence. 1918 December
15 Correspondence. 1919 January
15 Correspondence. 1919 February
15 Correspondence. 1919 March
15 Correspondence (Folder 1 of 2). 1919 April
16 Correspondence (Folder 2 of 2). 1919 April
16 Correspondence. 1919 May
16 Correspondence. 1919 June-October
16 Correspondence. 1919 November
16 Correspondence. 1919 December
17 Correspondence. 1920 January
17 Correspondence. 1920 February
17 Correspondence. 1920 March-December
17 Correspondence. 1921 January
17 Correspondence. 1921 February-April
17 Correspondence. 1921 May-September
18 Correspondence. 1921 October-December
18 Correspondence. 1922
18 Correspondence. 1923
18 Correspondence. 1924-1925
18 Correspondence. 1926
18 Correspondence. 1927-1928 March
19 Correspondence. 1928 April-December
19 Correspondence. 1929-1930
19 Correspondence. 1931-1932
19 Correspondence. 1933
19 Correspondence. 1934 January-May
19 Correspondence. 1934 June-December
20 Correspondence. 1935
20 Correspondence. 1936-1939
20 Correspondence. 1940-1941
20 Correspondence (Appointment to Everglades National Park Commission). 1941
20 Correspondence. 1942-1951
20 Correspondence. 1952-1963
21 Personal Correspondence. 1907-1908
21 Personal Correspondence. 1909-1910
21 Personal Correspondence. 1911-1913
21 Personal Correspondence. 1914-1916
21 Personal Correspondence. 1917-1919


Miscellaneous


Box
22 Everglades National Park Dedication Pamphlet. 1947
22 Inauguration Program and Business Card for William S. Jennings. 1901
22 Map of Turtle Mound, magazine articles, speeches, etc.
22 Miscellaneous Newspaper Clippings.
22 Miscellaneous Newspaper Clippings.
22 Postcards (Royal Palm Park).
22 Royal Palm State Park/Everglades National Park (clippings, programs, speeches).
23 Biographical.
23 Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Reports (Florida Federation of Women's Clubs).
23 Duval County Highway Beautification Association (Minutes, correspondence) Folder 1. 1928-1954
23 Duval County Highway Beautification Association (Minutes, correspondence) Folder 2. 1928-1954
23 Florida Federation of Women's Clubs - Historical notes.
23A Advertisement (on board): "See Royal Palm State Park".
23A Ladies Home Journal Clipping: "The Work of Women's Clubs".
23A Maps (Royal Palm Park, Everglades). 1914
23A Newspaper articles regarding William S. Jennings. 1901, 1916
23A Scrapbook: Beautification, Jacksonville, Duval County (clippings, programs, photos). 1933-1961
23A Sketch for Royal Palm Park Lodge.


Photographs


Box
23A May Mann Jennings; William Sherman Jennings; Royal Palm Park (Oversize photos).
24 May Mann Jennings.
24 May Mann Jennings and son, Sherman Bryan Jennings.
24 May Mann Jennings seated at front left in group of women.
24 Jennings, William Sherman.
24 Jennings, William Sherman - Group photos when Governor of Florida.
24 Jennings, William Sherman, May Mann and Bryan. Circa 1920
24 Jennings, William Sherman, May Mann and Bryan at Niagara Falls.
24 Clubhouses - Women's Clubs.
24 Dedications.
24 Family and other photos.
24 Florida Federation of Women's Clubs and other groups.
24 Florida Federation of Women's Clubs convention [oversize: stored in map case]. 1916?
24 Florida Federation of Women's Clubs convention at Miami [oversize: stored in map case]. 192?
24 Florida Federation of Women's Clubs convention at West Palm Beach [oversize: stored in map case]. 1923
24 Greater Federation of Women's Clubs - photos (2) of board members at White House [oversize: stored in map case]. 1923, 1924
24 Homes.
24 House-in-the-Woods.
24 Liberty Ship "W.S. Jennings".
24 Miscellaneous.
24 Negatives.
24 Royal Palm Park #1.
24 Royal Palm Park #2.
24 Royal Palm Park #3.
24 Royal Palm Park #4.
24 Royal Palm Park #5.
24 Royal Palm Park #6 - Work Crews.
24 Royal Palm Park Lodge.
24 Sanlybrodo and family photos.
24 Slides (1 of 2).
24 Slides (2 of 2).


Selected Subjects and Access Terms

Conservation of natural resources -- Florida -- Citizen participation.
Conservationists -- Florida -- Correspondence.
Florida Audubon Society.
Governors' spouses -- Florida.
Seminole Indians.
Women -- Suffrage -- Florida.
Women conservationists -- Florida.
Women in public life -- Florida.
Women social reformers -- Florida.



For further information, please contact: Special Collections Access Services.

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