Marguerite McLaughlin papers and awards,


Professional and personal papers related to the career of Marguerite McLaughlin, 1939-1984.

Descriptive Summary

Marguerite McLaughlin papers and awards,
Marguerite McLaughlin
0.75 cubic feet (3 boxes; 1 wrapped package)
Women in journalism -- Kentucky -- Lexington.
World War II, 1939-1945.
University of Kentucky. School of Journalism.
Lexington Alumni Association.
Newspaper Advertising Executives Association, Inc.
Theta Sigma Phi.
Women in Communications, inc.
University of Kentucky Alumni Association.
McLaughlin, Marguerite, 1882-1961.
Welsh, William; 1889-1984.
This collection is arranged by subject in three series:
Finding Aid Author
Processed by Archives Staff and rearranged by Anne Ledford in June 2006 under the supervision of Deirdre Scaggs, University Archivist.; machine-readable finding aid created by Eric Weig
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Marguerite McLaughlin was born in Lexington, Kentucky, on September 30, 1882. She was a Journalist educator at the University of Kentucky, where she earned her AB in 1903. McLaughlin died November 25, 1961.
McLaughlin was one of the first, if not the first woman, to handle general reporting assignments for a newspaper in the South. She worked for the Lexington Herald as a drama and music critic, she handled murder cases, and served as farm editor from 1917 to 1918. Marguerite McLaughlin was a 40-year veteran reporter and a charter member of Theta Sigma Phi.
McLaughlin was the first woman teacher of journalism in the United States and she trained many well-known journalists including the late Joe Creason, George Michler, Thornton Connell of the Courier-Journal, Dr. Niel Plummer, former head of the UK School of Journalism; Don Whitehead, Pulitzer prize-winning AP press reporter; Governor Keen Johnson; Senators Earle Clements and Tom Underwood.
McLaughlin served as executive secretary of the UK Alumni Association during each World War; served 20 years (1920-1940) as President of the Lexington Alumni Club, and 30 years (1920-1950) as a member of the Association's executive committee.
During World War II, McLaughlin endeared herself to military alumni by having the Kernel sent to them wherever they were stationed. During the early 1950s, she was honored with the "Pro Ecclesiae et Pontificae" award by Pope Pius XII, the highest award which can be given to a Catholic laywoman.
In 1950, McLaughlin received the Alumni Association's Alma Magna Mater Award; in 1959 the Marguerite McLaughlin room in the Journalism Building was dedicated along with her portrait which hangs there today. She retired from UK after 38 years of teaching and then served as President of Welsh Printing Company for a number of years. Marguerite McLaughlin was named to the Hall of Distinguished Alumni on April 11, 1980.
Scope and Content
The Marguerite McLaughlin papers and awards include correspondence, newspaper articles, photographs, grade books, and magazines related to or commemorating her career as a UK journalism professor, secretary of the UK alumni association, and as president of the Lexington alumni association.
The collection also contains material related to the Theta Sigma Phi honorary society for women in journalism and communications, articles about William Welsh, the artist who painted McLaughlin's portrait, letters to the UK alumni association from military servicemen during World War II, and awards received by McLaughlin.

Restrictions on Access and Use

Conditions Governing Access
Grade books in Series I are restricted but other materials are open to researchers by appointment.

Contents of the Collection

Professional Materials

The Professional Materials series contains letters, press releases, and drafts related to McLaughlin's work with alumni associations, including three photographs of UK alumni who were World War II servicemen. It also includes grade books, the October 1942 Conference and War Clinic edition of The Digest, and photographs of or for McLaughlin.

i. Correspondence

Lexington Alumni Association letters, 1939

  • Box 1, folder 1
To top

University of Kentucky Alumni Association; 1944 Alumni Updates, etc.

  • Box 1, folder 2
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Correspondence from alumni in military service, 1940s

  • Box 1, folder 3
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ii. Grade Books


Journalism Class Roll Books, Grades 1943-1951

  • Box 1, folder 5
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iii. Miscellaneous Personal Items

Newspaper Advertising Executives Association, Inc. The Digest, 1942

  • Box 1, folder 4
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iv. Photographs

Portrait of McLaughlin as a B.A. graduate of State College of Kentucky in 1903

  • Box 2, item 1
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Signed print of the Dean of the College of Engineering, F. Paul Anderson: "To Miss Margaret McLaughlin, March 1934"

  • Box 2, item 2
To top

McLaughlin (far right) at a dinner table with two other unidentified, well dressed people to her right

  • Box 2, item 3
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McLaughlin seated in the background, far left, (only half of her face is pictured) at the same dinner party as Item 3

  • Box 2, item 4
To top

McLaughlin holding basketball tickets for UK's loss to Indiana in New Orleans' Sugar Bowl. Image credited to the Times Picayune, 1940 December 30

  • Box 2, item 5
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McLaughlin, professor of Journalism standing and lecturing to her class

  • Box 2, item 6
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UK Public Relations portrait of McLaughlin.

  • Box 2, item 7
To top

McLaughlin seated during the dedication of the M. McLaughlin Room, 1952 May 29

  • Box 2, item 8
To top

Commemorative Materials and Awards

The Commemorative Materials and Awards series contains articles, awards, and other items that commemorated McLaughlin's career.

Career related articles, 1952 and 1983

  • Box 1, folder 6
To top

Marguerite McLaughlin Room Dedication Book, 1952

  • Box 1, folder 7
To top

Program & clippings related to William Welsh, 1952 and 1984

  • Box 1, folder 8
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Letter to journalism alumni about Hall of Fame, 1984

  • Box 1, folder 9
To top

Theta Sigma Award plaque, 1941-1949

  • Box 3
To top

Theta Sigma Award plaque, 1950-1960

  • Box 3
To top

Journalism Hall of Fame plaque, 1980 (Accession no. 2005UA021)

  • Package 1
To top

Theta Sigma Phi Materials

The Theta Sigma Phi Materials series consists of the honorary fraternity for women in journalism's annual reports, ritual manuals, paper awards, and magazines. It includes chapter information, awards, and Theta Sigma Phi magazines.

Chi Chapter of Theta Sigma Phi, 1942, 1963-4, 1969

  • Box 1, folder 10
To top

Annual reports and other materials from Theta Sigma Phi Nationals, 1967-1969

  • Box 1, folder 11
To top

Theta Sigma Phi By-law, Ritual and Officers' Manuals, 1959, 1964, 1966-1967

  • Box 1, folder 12
To top

Matrix, April 1968 - fall 1969

  • Box 1, folder 13
To top

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If you are visiting the Breckinridge Research Room, please request materials at least 48 business hours in advance of your arrival.

For all other questions, contact us at:

Researchers are required to have an SCRC Researcher Account in order to request or order digital copies of materials. Research Account set-up and use instructions can be found at:

If you are visiting the Breckinridge Research Room, please request materials at least 48 business hours in advance of your arrival.

For all other questions, contact us at:


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