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Zoe R. Murphy papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MS-0162

Scope and Content

This collection (1899-1983, undated) contains biographical information, correspondence, printed matter, and material related to Master Farm Homemakers and to the Rural Teacher of the Year Award sponsored by Wallace’s Farmer and the National Education Association. The printed matter includes bulletins and pamphlets of recipes and information of interest to homemakers.


  • 1899-1983, undated


Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

Open for research.

Use/Re-use Restrictions

Consult Special Collections and University Archives


Zoe R. Murphy was born at West Bend, Iowa, and grew up on a farm in northern Minnesota. She attended North Dakota State Teachers College, Fargo, North Dakota; took nurses training at Walter Reed Army Hospital, Washington, D. C.; attended George Washington University, Washington, D. C. for a year and attended Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa, for a year. For two years she taught school in Minnesota. In 1923 she married Donald R. Murphy.

In 1936 Mrs. Murphy joined the staff of Wallace’s Farmer as Homemaking Editor in which capacity she supervised homemaking copy; wrote three to four lead articles per year; ran the State Fair booth; handled the Rural Teacher Award and traveled extensively throughout the state to meet with homemakers and 4-H groups. In the 1940s she established the annual Master Homemaker Award; helped organize the National Farm Home Editors Association in 1947 and became president in 1958. She was an active volunteer in community affairs such as the First Baptist Church, Des Moines, Iowa; the Polk County Mental Health Association, Iowa State Library Board and Civil Liberties Union. She retired in 1974.


1.68 Linear Feet (3 document boxes and 2 half-document boxes)


The collection is organized into six series:

Series 1, Biographical information, 1899-1983

Series 2, Bulletins and pamphlets, 1931-1966, undated

Series 3, Correspondence, 1953-1971, undated

Series 4, Master Farm Homemaker, 1947-1983

Series 5, The Soil and Health News, 1980-1983

Series 6, Teacher of the Year, 1958-1967

Processing Information

Released on 2018-11-01.

MS-0162. Zoe R. Murphy papers, 1899-1983, undated
December 12, 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections and University Archives Repository

403 Parks Library
701 Morrill Road
Iowa State University
Ames Iowa 50011-2102 United States
(515) 294-6672