Sharon Parker Collection

 

 

Women’s Museum of California Library and Archives

 

Sharon Parker Collection
1972-1979

 

 

Collection Overview

Title: Sharon Parker Collection

Accession Number: AC-007

Prepared by: Amalia Cristiano

Head Archivist: Julia Friedman

Date Acquired: Unknown      

Date Processed: September 28, 2017

Location: Women’s Museum of California, San Diego, CA

Language: Collection material is in English

Extent: One box

 

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions: Open to research

Use restrictions: None

 

Historical Note

Sharon Parker is a widely recognized and lauded long-time volunteer for various organizations in San Diego. She is most known for her pioneering work with the LAMBDA Archives of San Diego. LAMBDA’s mission is to collect, preserve, and teach the history of LGBT people in the San Diego and Northern Baja California region, with most materials dating from post-1970 but some from as early as the 1930s. LAMBDA is an all-volunteer, non-profit corporation. It contains one of the largest collections of LGBT history in the country.[1]

 

Brief History of Sharon Parker

Sharon Parker is one of twelve children from a family that placed enormous emphasis on volunteer work and giving back to the community; her family still volunteers as a unit at the West Virginia State Book Festival. Thus, Sharon Parker is deeply entrenched in volunteer work in the San Diego community. Since the 1980s, Sharon Parker has volunteered with The Center as a phone volunteer, as well as the San Diego AIDS project, Pride, and GLAAD. Parker was employed with the AIDS Foundation San Diego until 1997, and was an 11-year volunteer with AIDS Walk San Diego. Parker was also founding co-president of the San Diego Chapter of GLAAD, and served as secretary and co-president for five years with Qualcomm’s Lambda Pride employee LGBT group. Parker’s work with Lambda is her most recognized contribution, as she was a 2010 Honoree and President’s Award recipient for her contributions to the LGBT community. She began volunteering with Lambda Archives of San Diego in 1991 and has since served as secretary, volunteer coordinator, advisor to the board, and as president of the organization for ten years. Other awards for Parker’s service work include Brad Truax Award for AIDS service, the Nicky Award for Community Service, the United Way LGBT Leadership Award, the San Diego Pride Community Service Award, and the It Needed to be Done honoree of Women’s History Month from the Women’s Museum of California, another institution at which Parker volunteered her time.[2]

 

 

Summary of the Collection

The Sharon Parker collection consists of one box of 18 separate folders. Each folder contains several materials of similar genre, such as poetry, periodicals, or pamphlets for various organizations. Although each folder addresses different issues related to women, the theme of the collection is feminism and women’s liberation.

 

 

Container List: Box and Folder Material

 

Box 1

Consists of 18 folders, each containing various documents related to the work of Sharon Parker.

 

Folder 1

  •        Box 1: Folder 1: Califia Community, promotional pamphlet
  •        Box 1: Folder 1: “Academic Feminists and the Women’s Movement” booklet
  •        Box 1: Folder 1: “You are an Unlimited Woman!” pamphlet
  •        Box 1: Folder 1: “Women Speak Out About Abortion” booklet

 

Folder 2

  •       Box 1: Folder 2: “Free Space: A Perspective on the small group in women’s   liberation”     booklet
  •       Box 1: Folder 2: “The Political Economy of Women’s Liberation” pamphlet
  •       Box 1: Folder 2: “I am Furious; (Female)”
  •       Box 1: Folder 2: “What is the Revolutionary Potential of Women’s Liberation?” pamphlet
  •       Box 1: Folder 2: “Sisterhood is Powerful” booklet
  •       Box 1: Folder 2: “Toward a Female Liberation Movement”

 

Folder 3

  •        Box 1: Folder 3: Majority Report: The Women’s Newspaper     
  •        Box 1: Folder 3: Feminist newspaper, Plexus
  •        Box 1: Folder 3: Albatross magazine
  •        Box 1: Folder 3: “We are Visible” periodical
  •        Box 1: Folder 3: Broomstick magazine
  •        Box 1: Folder 3: Women’s Times newspaper
  •        Box 1: Folder 3: “Anne Bonny and Mary Read” piece

 

Folder 4

  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “Living for the City” handbook
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “Credit for Women” pamphlet
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “Action Happenings” pamphlet
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: Rose Elizabeth Bird to be Chief Justice of the California Supreme Court
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “The Third Women and Alternative Lifestyles Conference”
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “Women in Sports” booklet
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “Feminist Communications” periodical
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: “A Doctor’s Sex Guide” manual
  •        Box 1: Folder 4: Envelope addressed to Gloria Johnson

Folder 5

  •        Box 1: Folder 5: “Quest: A Feminist Quarterly” periodical
  •        Box 1: Folder 5: “Quest: A Feminist Quarterly”
  •        Box 1: Folder 5: Sojourner, book

 

Folder 6

  •         Box 1: Folder 6: Moving On, newspaper
  •         Box 1: Folder 6: Big Mama Rag, journal
  •         Box 1: Folder 6: New Indicator, periodical
  •         Box 1: Folder 6: Coyote Howls, newspaper
  •         Box 1: Folder 6: The Now Times, newspaper

 

Folder 7

  •         Box 1: Folder 7: A Woman is Talking to Death, poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: A Common Woman, poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: Let Them Be Said, poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: Beginnings, poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: Gathering my Belongings, poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: Notes on Motherhood, Poverty, Depression, Rejection, Suicide, and Being Female (Not         Necessarily in that Order) poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: Love for the Journey poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: Seven Senses Let it Be Said poem book
  •         Box 1: Folder 7: “Bread and Roses” and “The Princess” poems

Folder 8

  •           Box 1: Folder 8: “Feminist Dividend” newsletter
  •           Box 1: Folder 8: Lucy Goldman for City Council campaign paper
  •           Box 1: Folder 8: “E.R.A. is in JEOPARDY!” paper
  •           Box 1: Folder 8: San Diego Union clip

 

Folder 9

  •           Box 1: Folder 9: Some Reasons for the Popularity of the Birth Control Movement book
  •           Box 1: Folder 9: “American Women—their use and abuse” booklet
  •           Box 1: Folder 9: “California Department of Justice Information Pamphlet No. 9; Women’s Rights Handbook” booklet
  •           Box 1: Folder 9: “Feminist Resources for Schools and Colleges; A Guide to Curricular Materials” booklet
  •           Box 1: Folder 9: “International Women’s Professional Softball” magazine
  •           Box 1: Folder 9: “Women Speaking” quarterly periodical

Folder 10

  •          Box 1: Folder 10: Sojourner: The Women’s Forum newspaper
  •          Box 1: Folder 10: Sojourner: The Women’s Forum

Folder 11

  •          Box 1: Folder 11: Center for Women’s Studies and Services, Nov. 1977, Vol. 6 No. 6
  •          Box 1: Folder 11: Center for Women’s Studies and Services, Nov. 1973
  •          Box 1: Folder 11: Center for Women’s Studies and Services, Jan. 1974
  •          Box 1: Folder 11: Center for Women’s Studies and Services, Aug. 1973
  •          Box 1: Folder 11: Center for Women’s Studies and Services, 1973  
  •          Box 1: Folder 11: Center for Women’s Studies and Services Dec. 1973

 

Folder 12:

  •          Box 1: Folder 12: Sister newspaper
  •          Box 1: Folder 12: Sister newspaper
  •          Box 1: Folder 12: Sister newspaper

Folder 13:

  •          Box 1: Folder 13: Country Women magazine
  •          Box 1: Folder 13: Country Women magazine

Folder 14

  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, Oct. 1977
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, July 1975
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, April 1977
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, Sept. 1978
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, March 1978
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, May 1977
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, June 1977
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, May 1979
  •           Box 1: Folder 14: Feminist Communications, September 1976

Folder 15

  •             Box 1: Folder 15: “The Greater Golden Hill Poetry Express.” Vol. I. Issue #2
  •             Box 1: Folder 15: “The Greater Golden Hill Poetry Express.” Vol. I Issue #3
  •             Box 1: Folder 15: “The Greater Golden Hill Poetry Express.” Vol. I. Issue # 4
  •             Box 1: Folder 15: “The Greater Golden Hill Poetry Express.” Vol. I. Issue #1
  •             Box 1: Folder 15: “The Greater Golden Hill Poetry Express.” Vol. II Issue #2         

Folder 16

  •             Box 1: Folder 16: The Second Wave, Vol. 3, No. 2
  •             Box 1: Folder 16: The Second Wave, Vol. 3, No. 4
  •             Box 1: Folder 16: The Second Wave, Vol. 4, No. 1

           

 

Folder 17

  •             Box 1: Folder 17: Women, Vol. 4, No. 2
  •             Box 1: Folder 17: Women, Vol. 2, No. 3
  •             Box 1: Folder 17: Women, Vol. 2, No. 3

 

Folder 18

  •             Box 1: Folder 18: Momma, May 1972 Vol. I, No. 3
  •             Box 1: Folder 18: Momma, February 1973, Vol. I, No. 3

 

Scope and Contents of the Materials

 

Folder 1: Box 1

 

Folder 1 contains pamphlets and booklets that address common female issues such as abortion, feminism, and the encouragement of women from academia to support the feminist cause. Included in this folder is a pamphlet for the Califia Community Retreat, “Academic Feminists and the Women’s Movement,” “You are an Unlimited Woman!” pamphlet and a booklet entitled, “Women Speak Out About Abortion,” which includes testimony from hundreds of women who have experienced abortion. These materials provide a basis for the feminist movement as well as resources for other women to offer support to one another and the female liberation cause.
           

As Ms. Parker was primarily a gay rights and AIDS advocate, it is unclear why so many materials in her collection also point to her as being deeply entrenched in the women’s movement. However, throughout her lifetime Ms. Parker has volunteered with numerous organizations all over San Diego County, and it can be assumed that she was an advocate for all civil rights cases.

 

Folder 2: Box 1

 

Folder 2 contains various publications related to the female liberation movement. Some of the topics discussed include the importance of small groups functioning in a free space to provide a dynamic environment for the “Women’s Liberation Movement” as well as women’s current place in society and how to remedy it. These publications were all published in the 1970s, during a time of political turmoil in regards to women’s rights.  Common issues discussed in these publications include childcare, labor, the women’s movement, and sex.

 

Another common theme among the women’s liberation literature is the encouragement for women to come together in order to succeed. This is most prominently discussed in “Sisterhood is Powerful.”

 

Folder 3: Box 1

 

This folder contains various feminist periodicals and one fiction piece. The periodicals in this folder address topics such as “radical-lesbian-feminist satire,” in Albatross, poetry and art in “We are Visible,” women over forty in Broomstick, and women’s news in San Diego in Women’s Times. The final item is a written piece about two lesbian lovers who were also pirates called “Anne Bonny and Mary Read” written by Susan Baker. The story contains some historical content for the time period including the Salem Witch Trials but it is unclear if the story is embellished nonfiction or a made-up historical piece.

Common topics addressed in Broomstick include menopause, family, politics, and protest. Majority Report: The Women’s Newspaper deals with all things relating to women. In this particular issue, the focus is on feminism during the Bicentennial and upcoming political elections.

 

The newspaper titled Plexus is a feminist newspaper for the Bay Area. Common articles that may be found in this particular newspaper include columns promoting diverse women, genetic research, gay rights, and justice for rape cases. Since Sharon Parker was heavily involved in the gay rights movement in San Diego, it is no surprise that she had periodicals from the Bay Area that commonly addressed gay rights issues.

 

 

Folder 4: Box 1

 

This folder contains various publications of miscellaneous issues regarding women’s rights. For example, items include a survival handbook for women living in the city of San Diego, a pamphlet teaching women about credit, a few promotional pamphlets for the San Diego Chapter of N.O.W., a research report about athletic opportunities for women in both the NCAA and professional leagues in 1977, and a sex manual that addresses topics such as pregnancy and abortion. Although they are all different issues that women face in society, the common theme is women’s rights and liberation. It can be deduced that Sharon Parker was either an attendee of organizations such as N.O.W. in San Diego, or that she was an advocate for women’s liberation but not necessarily directly involved in the movement.

 

 

Folder 5: Box 1

 

Folder 5 contains three books, two of which are issues of the periodical titled, “Quest: A Feminist Quarterly.” The topics of these issues ranged from women in the workforce to money, fame, and power.

 

The final item in this folder is a book called Sojourner, which contains women’s art and poetry on all different topics, such as rape, abortion, and oppression of women. It is not clear what Sharon Parker’s relationship to these periodicals were but she may have been a subscriber or a collector of these issues.

 

Folder 6: Box 1

 

This folder contains all newspapers, although they are based in different areas. Each newspaper addresses current female topics. For example, articles that may have been found in the New Indicator, based out of UC San Diego, include campus safety for women. The issue of New Indicator found in Folder 6 was addressing Rape Awareness Week.  Moving On is a monthly publication that chronicled new developments in the women’s liberation movement. Similarly, common articles found in the other newspapers, such as Coyote Howls, Big Mama Rag, and The Now Times, all address female issues such as violence, abortion, and welfare.

 

 

Folder 7: Box 1

 

This folder contains several books, all of which are poems. Some of the themes addressed are depression, motherhood, women’s experiences in everyday life, and African-American female experiences. These poem books were not periodicals but single publications, with some including illustration. The majority of these poem books contain various authors, with the exception of Gathering my Belongings, which is written by a single author, Shelley Savren. Judging by the large number of poem books in this folder, it can be assumed that Sharon Parker enjoyed poetry, particularly related to women and their everyday struggles.

 

Folder 8: Box 1

 

This folder contains various publications that detail political and social issues of the time; most prominently, the Equal Rights Amendment, or E.R.A. The first item is the “Feminist Dividend”, a newsletter of the California Feminist Federal Credit Union.

The next item is a single paper campaigning for Lucy Goldman for City Council, using the abbreviation E.R.A to outline her policies, such as “Equal Pay for equal worth” and “Alcohol/drug prevention programs”. The next item is a small, single red piece of paper with the words “E.R.A. is in JEOPARDY!” It is unclear what this paper is associated with or where it came from. The final item in Folder 8 is a clip from the San Diego Union detailing a political clash between two candidates for East County supervisor over the E.R.A. It appears that Sharon Parker was interested in both local and national politics related to women.

 

 

Folder 9: Box 1

 

This folder contains various publications and periodicals that address issues such as black liberation, divorce, women in international politics, birth control, feminist literature, and women in society. For example, “Auntie Bellum” is a South Carolina Journal for Women that commonly addressed topics such as motherhood and women in society. It is unclear what Sharon Parker’s relation to this local periodical from the East Coast was, or if she may have collected it at some point. The handbook titled “California Department of Justice Information Pamphlet No. 9; Women’s Rights Handbook” from the Attorney General, discusses topics such as employment, child bearing, credit education, housing, insurance, domestic relations, business, public assistance, day care services, rape, and other violence. The one seemingly unrelated magazine, called “International Women’s Professional Softball” by the San Diego Sandpipers, may indicate a hobby of Sharon Parker’s. In addition, the final item is a large book of poems, comics, and other illustrations, entitled Libera.

 

Folder 10: Box 1

 

This folder contains issues from the newspaper Sojourner: The Women’s Forum. The first issue, from October 1985, chronicles the feminist response to the AIDS epidemic, among other various issues for women around the world.

 

The second and final issue in this folder of Sojourner from November 1984 addresses poor and working class women as well as contemporary health problems such as VDTs. On the front page is also a message from the newspaper stating that they will be voting for vice-presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro and will be temporarily suspending publication. Thus, Sojourner commonly addressed female health issues, particularly for lower and working class women. Sharon Parker may have been a subscriber to this magazine, especially because of her deep involvement in fighting the AIDS epidemic.

 

Folder 11: Box 1

 

This folder contains issues from the Center for Women’s Studies and Services, a feminist bulletin from San Diego, California. There are six issues total, from various months and years. Themes discussed in these issues include women in music, American racism, and New Zealand Legislation’s restrictions of abortion rights. However, these bulletins also included fictional stories for entertainment, articles chronicling the Fourth Annual Women’s Festival of the Arts, and suggestions to improve feminist organizations and new trends in feminist organizations across the country. Sharon Parker may have been a subscriber to this feminist bulletin since it was based in San Diego, and there are six issues in this folder.

 

Folder 12: Box 1

 

This folder contains three issues from the same newspaper, entitled Sister, a West Coast Feminist Newspaper. The first issue deals with women and social control.

The second issue addresses the L.A. Demonstration for JoAnne Little, Women’s Words Conference, and The Lot of Radical Women in Spain. The last issue in this folder is dedicated to the Los Angeles Women’s Center and the “Revolt for Love.” It can be deduced that this newspaper focused on feminism in Los Angeles, so it is unclear why Sharon Parker had three issues, unless she was simply interested in the feminist organizations happening around the world.

 

Folder 13: Box 1

 

This folder contains two issues from “Country Women” magazine, a magazine dedicated to women living in rural areas. Some topics that could be found in this periodical include women who paved the way for later generations to have a more equal place in society, parenting, aging, and menopause. Again, it is unclear why Sharon Parker may have been interested in this magazine since she lived in San Diego rather than a rural setting.

 

Folder 14: Box 1

 

This folder contains issues from Feminist Communications, a feminist monthly publication based out of San Diego, CA. There are seven issues of the newspaper and two “Feminist Communications” bulletins with news, events, and announcements. Some of the topics that can be found in Feminist Communications include women’s work, court cases which pertain to violence against women (such as the acquittal of a man for rape), women in China, Mother’s Day, gay pride, abortion, homemakers, women’s health, and the struggles of getting the E.R.A. bill passed. It can be assumed that Sharon Parker was a subscriber to this magazine, based on the number of issues contained in this folder, and because it was a periodical based out of San Diego.

 

Folder 15: Box 1

 

This folder contains five issues of the periodical “The Greater Golden Hill Poetry Express”. This is a periodical based out of San Diego and dedicated to women’s poetry. Each issue contains poetry from different authors and address different topics such as women’s rights, rape, and the struggles of being a female in a male-dominated society. It appears that Sharon Parker was a fan of feminist poetry based on her extensive collection of poetry books.

 

Folder 16: Box 1

 

This folder contains three issues from the magazine The Second Wave, known as “a magazine of the new feminism.” The kind of topics that can be found in this magazine include reports on feminist books, the unionization of restaurant workers, and women and corporations.

 

Folder 17: Box 1

 

This folder contains three issues of the magazine, “Women”. Common issues that are addressed in this periodical include women as workers under capitalism, women incarcerated, and the cost of living. There is one missing item from this collection called “Socialist Feminism.” It appears that the common theme of this magazine is women’s direct relationship with society.

 

Folder 18: Box 1

 

The final folder in this box is a clipping and one full issue of the magazine/newspaper Momma, a magazine dedicated to single mothers. Common articles that can be found in this periodical include topics such as childcare, support for single mothers, and announcements regarding upcoming events. Sharon Parker did not have any children so it is unclear what her interest in this magazine may have been.

 



[1] “Lambda Archives of San Diego.” Lambda Archives of San Diego. Accessed August 07, 2017. https://lambdaarchives.org/.

[2] Esther Rubio-Sheffrey, “Heroes, Pioneers and Trailblazers 2010 Honoree: Sharon Parker”, San Diego Gay and Lesbian News, Feb. 18, 2010. http://sdgln.com/news/2010/02/18/heroes-pioneers-and-trailblazers-2010-honoree-sharon-parker.